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Thread: Explaining SCI to a 3 y/o

  1. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by lynnifer
    I always (still) hate that too. One day a friend gave me a different perspective though .. maybe they wonder why such a good looking gal is in a wheelchair, just maybe they're admiring you.
    My ex-husband used to say that.

    There are two kinds of stares from kids. There is the kind where they are staring, but they're eyes aren't bugging out of their head, and their mouth isn't hanging open, and if you make eye contact with them, they either smile or turn away. I'm perfectly fine with that kind of stare. It's the ones that have their eyes really wide and their mouths hanging open and they grab their mom's hand and they won't stop staring or change their expression. Ugh, that drives me crazy.

    I was at the beach with a friend and my daughter yesterday and at one point she casually said, "I wish you could walk so we could hike around on trails." I said, "Yeah, me too". And then we talked about something else. Obviously it comes up once in a while, but neither one of us gets emotional about it.

  2. #12
    My son, who is 17 with all that implies, is nevertheless kind and compassionate about my physical weaknesses.

    This must be the hardest thing for you, Emi. She'll understand what she needs to know. Maybe you could tell her that the doctors tried their best but your legs were too sick and couldn't get well?

    Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall
    Humpty Dumpty had a great fall
    All the King's Horses and all the King's men
    Couldn't put Humpty together again.

    I don't know about you but I am getting more and more egg shaped...

  3. #13
    I got a 6 yr old step grandson and he is always asking Me Papa why can't you run, or why do you use a cane? are you going to be able to walk any faster? hard to say to them no it won't get any better

  4. #14
    I have a friend whose face, unfortunately was disfigured by a bear attack. Then she had a child with Down Syndrome. They were on a bus sitting next to an elderly lady. The lady was looking at them, but trying not to look. The little girl was bolder. She stared at the old lady and finally remarked, for the whole bus to hear "Mommy, that lady has wrinkles". There was laughter all around.

  5. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by doingtimeonmyass
    I cannot give you any advice. I have a 2 1/2 your old daughter and we haven't had to cross that bridge yet. She will grab my hand and tell me to come to her room sometimes. So I drive in that direction and let her think she is pulling me along. It really breaks my heart as well that I can't do as much with her as other parents. With me not being able to use my hands, it really sucks. But on the bright side of things she is extremely patient and very helpful to me. She seems to understand that I cannot do things and need help.

    My wife and daughter went on a little vacation to visit her parents who live in another state and were away for four days. When she came back on Monday she was a little shy at first, but the last couple of days she has been more affectionate to me than ever. She's been climbing up on my wheelchair giving me hugs, wanting me to play games with her, etc.

    I can get pretty depressed if I dwell on things, especially when I'm in a lot of pain which is a daily thing for me. But then seeing how much I make a difference in her life makes a huge difference in mine. Sorry to just ramble along on your thread... it's tough but if you find some helpful ways of dealing with that, please let me know.

    I only have limited experience with children (my own and a few that I have observed) but I think that they love you for who you are and it has nothing to do with your physical disabiltiies. Children understand disability in a way that I wish that adults would. They love you and it is unconditional. In some ways, I think that is good for them. They understand deep down inside that the worth of a person is not their physical ability but the fact that the person loves them. Love your daughter and she will not only be a better person but she will understand that we are not what we do physically. We are what we are. It breaks my heart when a mother says that she cannot hug her child but my heart doesn't matter and only the child's. The child knows love. She will be tougher for knowing that you love her.


  6. #16
    Senior Member patd's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Boise, Idaho, USA

    3 yr old

    My 3 yr old boy looks at me one day and says, "Someday, I'm going to grow up big and strong, just like Daddy! And be in a wheelchair!" This motivated me to stand more with a modified walker and soon my son was saying, "Someday, I'm going to grow up big and tall, just like Daddy!

    The first time he saw me standing, he stared at my feet with bulging eyes and scanned up till his mouth dropped open. He was surprised, amaized. I felt adequate! But, what he sees me doing has alot more to do with what he thinks of me than how I look.

    I like to make things an fix things, so, to hear the kids say to Mommy, when she needs help, "Daddy can help us with this!" This is music to my ears!


  7. #17
    Senior Member mr_coffee's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    San Francisco, CA
    hah pat, ur son sounds like a great kid, so does everyone elses as well.

    I remember when i was in my wheelchair rolling around in the mall and alittle boy said, Cool daddy i want a bike like that. But then again, my x-girlfriends sister adored me but when she saw me in the wheelchair she ran away and asked who i was, it was pretty depressing. Its interesting how younger people respond to the wheelchair.

    Or the greatest thing was when I scared my little cuz becuase he hadn't seen me in the wheelchair and my grandma promptly responded, "don't be afraid, he's only a crippled boy in a wheelchair." My mouth dropped and i told my grandma thanks for breaking it easy hah.
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  8. #18
    Thanks Wise.

  9. #19
    I dont have kids but have been trying to deal with this issue with my nephews and nieces. They come to visit me in rehab and its always hard because they want me to play with them and hug them and I cant. But Dr Young is right. They seem to be dealing with this better the adults in my life. They ask questions without shame and are open about how my chair or vent makes them feel. They seemed shy and scared at first and I wasn't sure if they should keep coming to the hospital. But apparently they are okay with it and they always cheer me up when they visit They are all too young to fully understand all this yet so I worry that things might change when they get older and then maybe they wont be so accepting of the explanation or of me.
    Last edited by orangejello; 07-31-2006 at 07:07 PM.

  10. #20
    Senior Member lynnifer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Windsor ON Canada
    Quote Originally Posted by orangejello
    They are all too young to fully understand all this yet so I worry that things might change when they get older and then maybe they wont be so accepting of the explanation or of me.
    Won't happen. My neice was 1 and my nephew hadn't been born yet. Amazing for their capability to see the real person and not the metal or rubber attached to our asses. lol They are now 21 and 20. The significant others seem to be won over by whatever my niece/nephew tells them about 'Aunt Jenny' as well. Hopefully no worries!

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