Saturday, October 25, 2008

Myths on Down Syndrome Part 2

MYTH: God gives children with Down syndrome only to "special" parents.

FACT: Very quickly all of us will tell you that there is nothing special about us. We are not more patient, more loving, or more virtuous. As a matter of fact, from my own life, God gave me a child with Down syndrome because my heart needed to be fixed. I needed much changing.
However, I would agree in the fact that many parents of children with Down syndrome (and other disabilities) BECOME "better" people. Just remember they did not start that way, our children transformed us.

MYTH: Children with Down syndrome are always happy.

FACT: They are not always happy. They are crabby, stubborn, disobedient, sad, mischievous, rude, deceiving, and strong willed, just like every other child.
Their ability to experience joy and love surpasses that of a typical child. They in fact know happiness better, but it is not to be mistaken or overlooked as the only emotion they show or feel.

MYTH: Siblings will always be embarrassed or resentful of their brother or sister with Down syndrome.

FACT: All siblings are embarrassed of any sibling at some point or another. Most of the time, siblings tend to become more accepting of others, more caring, more loving. It seems like it is not only the parents that are transformed by their chromosomally enhanced child, it is the siblings as well.
There will be resentment of any sibling if someone gets overlooked.

And my dear friend Karina. Yes, adults with Down syndrome are now getting married, and many go own to have their own children. They used to believe that males were sterile, but they have discovered that it was an assumption based on the fact that no male with Down syndrome was given the chance to have babies. An individula with Down syndrome has a 50/50 chance of having a child with Down syndrome. Remember my first post on meiosis (cell division) half the eggs of women have an extra chromosome, half are normal. Half the sperm of a man has an extra chromosome, half of them are normal.
Who they marry will alter the chances. For example, if two adults with Down syndrome marry, they have 50% chance of having a child with Down syndrome, 25% chance of a typical child, and 25% chance of no conception (because two cells with an extra chromosome will result in no pregnancy, there can be thre 21 chromosomes, but not four).
And many adults with Down syndrome marry people with other dissabilities, and there are even cases where they have married a typical adult.

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