A Mother With A Special Needs Child
A reader writes:
I am the mother of a 16 year-old girl with severe intellectual disabilities. I am disturbed by Mrs Palin's insincere comments when she speaks out for individuals with developmental delays. I watched The Colbert Report last night, and I have never been more proud to call myself a fan of Stephen Colbert.
But also, as a mother I wonder what is in Trig's future.
If his Down Syndrome does not severely effect his ability and he is able to read, he will read his mother's autobiography and learn that she questioned if she could love him. He will read interviews that his mother considered even for a split second to terminate her pregnancy, he will become aware that many consider his mother a hero for not terminating her pregnancy - thus knowing that among her fans he is considered beautiful but somehow a burden.
She needs to start treating him quietly as a child who will grow into a man. She needs to learn to advocate for him and not allow him to be a victim of satire when it suits her and a victim of discrimination when it can get her attention.
And she needs to stop using him as a political prop. A child with such needs should surely not be hauled around half-naked in front of flash photographers to promote a book tour, or be routinely referred to in speeches for applause lines. It's unseemly. But then so much about this person is.