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Fuck Politeness

This is a revolution, not a public relations movement

I know that usually my posts are giant ‘up yours’ posts, or about political indignation.

Today though I just feel a little bit sad. Mini FP is 12. He has Aspergers, ADHD and Asthma. As he says, he’s collecting ‘A disorders’. 🙂

Aspergers and ADHD combine rather spectacularly though. Blunt literalism combined with vagueness, forgetfulness and grave difficulties in regulating concentration. Difficulty in picking up non verbal cues and verbal subtleties, frustration over constant miscommunication and a tendancy to only read and experience extremes of emotions (hysterical giggling and expolosive temper outbursts).

Things have come along way – there are only so many hours in a day and one parent only has so many resources. I have to earn the money to support us but balance that with time together. I have to study so my income will go up and he will learn that you don’t have to let your circumstances limit you to an alloted fate, and yet that sucks up time I could be earning money/spending time with him/relaxing.

But from secondary rage issues that saw him suspended from school, and being unable to handle the pressure of producing written work, and physically running out of the classroom to avoid any test situations, he’s now settled in the classroom and playground, tests very well in standardised exams, and seems on the whole a healthier and happier kid. He’s even joined the school choir.

We work hard at making things run more smoothly. We’ve worked hard at helping him be more organised at school. We’ve just made lists for every concievable task around the house. And this morning I got an email asking for a face to face meeting with his teacher.

And suddenly the wind just went out of my sails. It wasn’t even a big deal. It wasn’t ‘Your son is a disruptive little monkey and I’m tearing my hair out’. I think it was the combination of the inconvenience (I work five days a week, I don’t drive, and any meeting related to school means a lot of standing around waiting for buses and inevitably at least an hour out of work, which, hey I have to make up for – this particular school seems to treat women’s jobs like they’re play jobs, just for a little sparkly pocket money rather than crucial to the provision of sustenance, and also serious workplaces in which it is essential that you turn up every day), the prickling burden of the number of upcoming meetings, appointments and assesments for which I will have to eat into MORE of my general leave (and forgo a day off for the two of us, or a sanity day for myself) and a sinking feeling that ‘It’s not working!!!’.

And even as that was overwhelming me, I knew that it was largely my reaction to it. It’s just a meeting. Potentially to discuss strategies. But it felt like a letter to say ‘Don’t get comfy! You’re STILL gonna have big school issues, WAAAAY into high school’.

I just feel a bit flat. And it’s possibly just a moment of my lifestyle and the recent exercise catching me up and making me a little tired and vulnerable. But you know. I get a bit…blah. That my only experience of parenthood is as the extremely young single  mother of a child with numerous special needs. That I had to learn so many of the basic life/parenting skills as I went that I feel ‘behind’ in some ways. That I don’t actually know what it is like to parent a child with less ‘extra’ needs, and to do it in tandem with a responsible adult. That might have been nice.

I get a bit sad for mini-FP that he has so many struggles, and that life exhausts him so much already. That a normal output in the classroom taxes him so much as he has to concentrate and sift for meaning, to learn facial cues by rote and memorise euphemisms, to block out sensory overload.

That high school will have its own pressures and difficulties, yes, for all kids, but especially for him. That the helplessness of adolescence might hit him doubly hard. I just wish I could be sure he would *know* deep inside himself that it’s much easier to be at ease with yourself and sing to your own tune as an adult.

I take pride in how much I’ve managed to do, how much I’ve provided. I still have more I want to acheive, and I know I want to get to the end of his childhood and say I did this, we (he and I) did this. That’s really important to me. But every now and then, on a bad day in a sad frame of mind, I just want someone to come and pick me up like a child and tuck me into bed and tell me it will be alright, they’ll make sure of it, that I can sleep because they are looking after things.


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