Someone recently asked me a question that I thought was worthy of an entire blog post because it is something that needs to be addressed in our culture.
I was asked how it makes me feel – given our circumstances with Tori – when friends post about their healthy, typically-developing children.
I paused before answering, but it wasn’t a new concept to me. It is something I have thought about almost daily since Krabbe began to appear in Tori. I just wanted to make sure I was clear in my response.
I pray that you will read this with an open heart and mind and not immediately be offended.
I am human, and there are days when I feel more sensitive about it than others.
There are days when it can be challenging to see posts from friends who don’t have to face the things we do, friends who don’t have to consider their genetics when making decisions about expanding their families, friends whose children aren’t dying.
I think if I didn’t feel a little sensitive to this it would indicate a deeper issue within myself – after all, what special needs parent wouldn’t see a healthy, typically developing child and not want that for their own child?
If I am honest, it is even difficult some days when I see photos and posts of other Krabbe children who can still do things that Tori can no longer do.
All of these things are reminders that I am losing my child and there is nothing I can do about it.
However, if these people are truly my friends, why wouldn’t I celebrate with them?
Why wouldn’t I be genuinely happy that their children are happy and healthy, that they have such a bright future and are learning new skills daily?
If Tori were still able to do those things, if Tori were still healthy and growing, I would hope that they could celebrate with us.
Our culture has become far too hypersensitive and it has reached a ridiculous point. It has to stop. It is a choice to be offended.
Why can’t we celebrate others’ successes even if we aren’t currently experiencing the same success?
Whatever happened to personal responsibility for our own emotions, actions, and everything else?
I cannot stand how easily offended people have become and how they expect the “offender” to take sometimes drastic measures to ensure that they don’t “offend” ever again. (This isn’t my first post about this topic – see another here.)
I would NEVER put the burden on others to make them feel bad about the fact that their kids are healthy and typically developing. That is selfish and cruel, and I believe it is also sinful.
On those days when I am grieving, I choose to take responsibility for my sensitivity. I may need to ignore Facebook posts occasionally or hide the friend from my News Feed for a while, or even stay off of social media for a while, but my friends don’t need to know that.
It is MY responsibility to deal with my own emotions and not steal another’s joy with my selfishness and jealousy.
What good does it do to make others feel badly that they have what I so desperately want?
If I want people to put themselves in my shoes, I need to do the same for them. And that includes being able to celebrate with them when things are going well and take personal responsibility for my own emotions on the tough days.
To our friends who are parents – we are genuinely thrilled for you and your growing families. We are so thankful that you don’t have to endure the trials that Brennan and I are enduring!
I may not comment on every post or photo, but I do share your joy most days, in my own quiet way. ❤️
Please take joy in your precious children! Don’t let anyone steal that joy from you.
Thank you for your love and support of our family throughout the past year – it means more than you know.