Disability is enormously difficult for the child with the disability. Not only is disability difficult for the child, but it can be difficult for the family dealing with a sibling or child that is disabled.
I’m not sure how many people consciously stop to think about that concept. Others just assume it’s business as usual. Families just get on as the world goes by. I’m lucky that my Cerebral Palsy wasn’t debilitating and that I am able to live a normal life, but emotionally I have come to understand and know what it was like not to talk about or deal with my emotions around disability and that is exactly what needed to happen.
Some of the details of the Oscar Pistorius’ case has brought back some of my own experiences and memories of how things were for me growing up with Cerebral Palsy. Like Oscar Pistorius, my emotional problems were also overlooked. No one can live with a disability and that disability not be addressed emotionally as if it doesn’t exist, but for some of us that is exactly what we had to do.
Children will always have emotions to deal with. It’s the nature of growing up, but with a disability so much more is needed. I don’t believe anyone growing up with a disability won’t have anger to deal with. I know I did. Oscar Pistorius also did. If you’re angry as a child, you stay angry as an adult.
I know that if my emotional issues had been addressed as a child, I wouldn’t have had so much work to do on myself as an adult. Those issues never go away, they stay to serve as a gentle reminder we need to deal with them and we need help.
It was obvious and so true for Oscar Pistorius. His anger issues pertaining to his disability and growing up with his disability weren’t addressed by the court, but there were clearly anger issues there. I am saddened by what has happened to him and both families, as I am sure many of us are.
There are many victims and no winners in this case. My thoughts go out to both families today.