You wouldn't say "She's a little cancer patient" Don't say "She's a little Down syndrome"
The journalist Caroline Boudet, mother of a pretty little girl with Down's syndrome, had a Facebook status which has been shared over 30 times. In order to explain as well as to free herself, the mother of little Louise has told the clichés that she unfortunately hears too often. The text, which is extremely well polished, conveys the message that words can hurt and that we must be respectful with others. I'll let you read it and I want to add, that little Louise is a real top lady with her good big cheeks! (via Catherine brisson)
[WORDS ARE IMPORTANT] She's my daughter. Louise. Who is four months old, two arms two legs, good fat cheeks and an extra chromosome.
Please when you meet a Louise, don't ask her mother "Wasn't that tested during pregnancy?" "Either it was and the decision to" keep the child "is assumed, or it was not and theresumption was important enough not to go back on it. In addition, any mother has an unfortunate tendency to feel guilty about anything and everything, so one more chromosome went unnoticed, I won't explain.
Don't tell her mother "It's your baby anyway". No. That's my baby, period. And "despite all", it's ugly as a first name, I much prefer Louise.
Don't tell her mother “as she's a little Down's syndrome… etc” No. She's a four month old girl with Down's syndrome, or down, whatever you like. This 47th chromosome is not what it IS, it is what it A. You wouldn't say "Like she's a little cancerous… etc".
Don't say "they are like this, they are like that". No. “They” all have their character, their physique, their tastes, their background. “They” are as different from each other as you are from your neighbor.
I know when you don't see it, you don't mean it, but words matter. They can comfort or hurt. So just think about it for a second, especially if you are in the medical profession and wear a white, pink, or green lab coat.
I don't usually open my status to everyone, but for this one I will. You can rotate and share it if you want.
Because of "Louise's mothers", there are 500 new ones a year who are spoiled a day by unfortunate words. I know it's not meant to hurt. You just have to know it.