As a parent of two boys, I’ve heard many ways of referring to our children and “identifying” them. Are they simply two boys? Two boys who have autism? Autistic children? Neurodiverse? Neurodivergent? Boys with special needs? Children who are not typical? Disabled boys? Boys with disabilities? Children with complex needs? I could go on and on, much like the debates on how it is appropriate to refer to someone.
Over the years our views on how to address, describe or identify our children has evolved and changed. As the boys have grown and matured they’ve started to be able to determine for themselves how they would like to be identified and if they want to be identified as anything other than boys at all. One thing I know for sure is not everybody is on the same page when it comes to this topic and there are a lot of strong opinions. People are different, we’re all different. How we each want to be identified or how we want others to refer to us is a personal choice that should be respected. If you need to or want to identify somebody and don’t know what their preference is, just ask.
At Cridge Respitality we support over 440 local families, all of whom have a child or children with a diagnosed disability. Our goal is to provide a parent/s or guardian with an opportunity once annually to do something special, something extra, something just for them. Whether it be a night away at one of our hotel partners, dinner out, or a performance at the theatre, free of charge, donated by our local business partners and community. Respitality is all about giving some love and care to the caregiver, to support them as they care for their children.
By Heather Stevens, The Cridge Respitality Program.
To learn more about The Cridge Respite & Respitaliy Program, visit this page.