Today’s service system attempts to address the “problems” of children and adults with developmental disabilities via interventions, treatments, therapies, special programs, and other services and entitlements. But hidden within all this “help” are unspoken messages that can harm those who receive the services. The messages vary, depending on the program or service, but they all share one commonality: “messages of incompetence” about children and adults with disabilities and family members. Under the cloak of benevolence, the service system presumes that medical personnel, educators, therapists, service coordinators, and others in the field have superior knowledge and expertise about the needs of children and adults with disabilities. But this is really a long-standing myth. People with disabilities and family members are the true experts . . .
If we want children and adults with disabilities to lead natural, ordinary, and fulfilling lives, we must be aware of the hidden messages of today’s conventional wisdom, and we must reject the philosophies that marginalize people with disabilities and family members. When we recognize disability is a natural part of life, we’ll know success and inclusion for people with disabilities will not come from the system . . . Click here to continue.
Benevolent Services, Dangerous Messages
Parents and people with disabilities (again, with the best of intentions) step into the jaws of the service system, and unintentionally relinquish their autonomy, free will, and choice, and accept the notion that others know best.
New Ways of Thinking and Revolutionary Common Sense