Did you really just say that to ME ?!?!?!

So as you all know this blog thing is a new endeavour and I’ve had huge amount of topics that I’ve been trying to “prioritize” in order to decide on what to write next.

And then I started talking to “her”. You know the mom who always has an opinion, who “knows” all the “you should know too” information, the one who’s kids are out of control but who thinks they’re perfect and your child really should learn from them. Ya. “HER“.

Well, this mom, mentioned that she read my first blog post and thought “it’s a great idea”. “I’m sure someone will love hearing your opinions” – with a not so subtle pat on the shoulder and a forced smile to my friend who was standing with us. But then the subject changed ever so slightly so she could offer her “advice” on posting pictures of my kids online. “I hope you’re not going to do that!” was her “question”.

Honestly, it’s been a serious question that has passed though my endless list of things to consider while starting this project, but seeing that I’m a photographer and MOST of my favourite pictures are of my kids I have decided to post some at some point. So I told her that. The conversation went from just that “a conversation” to a full out slap down lecture. She had an opinion on my priorities, my children’s safety and whether my husband knows about my decision because “maybe he needs to be informed”.


You’re going to question my priorities, my children’s well being and the state of my marriage all in a 5 minute conversation?!?! Β Uh, ya, NO!

But I can be a polite person. I can bite my tongue …to a point.

So I explained the value of introducing our family to “the world”. We want to show that despite all our challenges we are a “typical family”. I can write all the words in the world but people relate to pictures and I want to engage them. Oh, and yes, my husband knows.

And then… as if the first five minutes hadn’t brought me close enough to the edge….

IT happened…

She looked at Amiera (my little ladybug) and said “oh, well I’m sure it would be safe enough to just put HER picture online but I’d still be worried about your other two.”


For those of you who don’t know, Amiera is my five year old daughter and when she was born we were told she has Down Syndrome.Β I am the founder of our local Down Syndrome Support Group ~ Club 21 – Huron County and I work hard to promote awareness about the diagnosis and how these wonderful people impact our world – FOR THE BETTER!

Now, when she said “I’m sure it would be safe for HER picture”, I just about lost it!

Like, she’s safe because “no one would want her?”

Or she’s safe because “she’s not very cute?”

Or maybe because


Ya, these are the people I face. These are the people my daughter faces. These are the people thousands of others have to deal with on a daily basis.

These are the people I want to teach about Down Syndrome.

Funny thing is, as mad and unforgiving I am, if Amiera understood, she would forgive her “ignorance” in a heartbeat.

That’s just how she is. I’m still learning.

PS: If you are “HER” and for some unknown reason you haven’t already figured it out, you’re opinions are not wanted or required. Thank you.


About Jen Black

Jennifer is a stay at home mom of three raising her family with her "agvocating" husband on a farm in Huron County, Ontario. She is a designer, photographer, Social Media junkie and blogger. Her former life included advertising, marketing, and life in the big city. You can follow her on twitter @jennileeblack

Posted on April 8, 2011, in Down Syndrome, Just my thoughts, My Ladybug and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 35 Comments.

  1. Wow. Amazing how people can reveal themselves so thoroughly with so few words.

  2. Was gonna say, she’s probablyy gonna read this one, too. Goo luck with that! πŸ™‚

  3. unbelievable. I am so sorry.

  4. I obviously meant “good” not “goo”.

  5. Totally unacceptable. Sharing pics of ALL of your kids is your call as a parent. Sounds like SHE completely lacks any tack an should learn to listen before offering up opinions. Definitely not worth your energy.

  6. We all know there is a balance to telling our stories online and personal safety & security. You are a great mom and I know you walk those lines with great care. And yes, you need to keep up telling the story so some folks “get it.”

  7. Ignorant Supermom’s comment about your ladybug made me feel nauseous as I read your post. Obviously, your work of educating others is so important Jen!

  8. Amen! Although, if I were you, I would probably be sitting in jail right now, minus the foot that would still be stuck in that lady’s rear! See…you really DID keep your cool. But I also agree, our children will teach us way more than we could ever learn on our own. And some day, I hope to be able to touch the world just as well as my son can, with just a look.

    • LOL – I think if I didn’t have the kids with me, I might have been a whole lot more trouble! If the world knew how much these individuals have to offer, I truly believe society as a whole would benefit. …course, I’m bias. πŸ˜‰

  9. You. Are. Kidding.

    Some people. I swear. No tact whatsoever. Or manners. Or brains either really. I probably would have held my tongue until she said that then I’d have made her explain herself.

    I think she is adorable and I wanna squeeze her!!!!!

    I blog “anonymously” but that’s my preference. Everyone is comfortable with different things. That’s why it’s your blog and not mine and vice versa.

    Just keep on keepin’ on. πŸ™‚ hugs.

    • Thanks. I agree, everyone has to do what’s right for them. I think this is a great way to talk about our true “challenges” and help others see our world in a more accurate light.

  10. A very sensitive subject with me and I must say as discusting as it is, it happens all the time. I have learned sooo much from some of the most amazing people that I have supported. People just don’t get it. Amiera is gorgeous; you can’t get a smile much prettier than hers!

  11. Opinions are like armpits…everyone has a couple and they mostly stink…LOL.

    Let’s just say she showed “Her” lack of manners and now everyone knows πŸ™‚

    Dean-retired SLP

  12. I can’t believe someone could be that ignorant and say such awful things to you. She obviously doesn’t know what an amazing person and mother you are. As for her comments about Amiera, I think Amiera is one of the cutest little girls I’ve ever met and as sweet as they come. Her giggles and smiles bring a smile to my face every time I see her. Keep doing what you’re doing Jen, I think you are AMAZING!!!

    • I try not to let the stupid ones get to me. It’s the ones who I think know better and let comments “slip” that send me over the edge.
      This mom’s comments definitely didn’t surprise me. Just confirmed what I already thought of her.

  13. Wow – to think that woman is teaching her children to devalue people with disabilities as well… As another mom of a really sweet girl with DS, I have no idea what I’d tell such a witch if I ever heard garbage like that. I’m glad you have this outlet. Please keep up the blog, and let the world know that our kids with trisomies are as much part of our family as our kids with a typical number of chromosomes. And let that woman know that your daughter is lucky – in all those chromosomes, she never got the a$$hole gene that Ms. Perfect was apparently born with. Ugh.

    • LMAO!!! Thanks! Loving the support from everyone. Makes writing all this down even easier.
      Sounds like your daughter has a great support from you too! That’s fantastic.

      I promise I will continue to shout to the world so that someday, everyone will want an extra 21st chromosome!! πŸ˜‰

  14. I have the smallest hope that in 20 years that mom will come to you and apologize for being so ignorant and rude – but it’s unlikely she will develop that self awareness over time without life knocking a few sharp edges off her perspective on life. At times when my breath has been taken away by such comments, I have stepped back to wonder: without my son being born with Down syndrome, could that person have been me?
    I was just thinking about that recently, because my favorite cousin on Facebook posted a You Tube video on changes in perspective that I watched for the punchline instead of seeing the actual scene – and a disability advocate who I admire very much posted a twitter comment on it the same day that made me very aware that I missed the real message of the piece.
    Disturbing Portrayal of Blindness: http://bit.ly/eGKSso
    I have watched it again twice and thought all the way through it both times – how could I have missed THAT?
    So, it was a relief to read about the ‘supermom’ who made me feel much better by comparison. Other than that – no redeeming social value.

    • Very true! Thanks for including the link. I think most people get going through their daily lives, create “expectations” of some people and those thoughts really become habits. Let’s hope we can start to change those habits!

  15. Oh THAT mom! Yep, we all know her & can’t figure out how she hasn’t been stripped of all her PTO titles and banished from society – the idiot!
    Thank you for sharing your adorable ladybug & the rest of your family with us.

  16. Please do the penal system a favour and DO NOT introduce me to this one.

  17. You have every right to be upset about this…just don’t let someone like this get the best of you. I deal with these people everyday too and it just makes you wonder what values they teach their kids. I recently had someone ask me if I felt bad for Layla because she was brunette with brown eyes and not blond/blue eyes(like her own daughter), therefore, she wont receive as much affection from others. Hitler was out a long time ago, get with the times people.

  18. Sadly, I’m not surprised by that event. Some people can be so horrible and ignorant. We just have to look at our peeps and take a deep breath. You are so right that your daughter would probably just forgive her and move on. I have a 15 yo son and a 24 yo daughter with ds. They are so amazing, loving and kind. I two am still learning. Sometimes, I feel so in awe of their beautiful brilliance. I haven’t learned alot, but I do know, those are not the people who will ever be anyone or make a difference. Don’t let the weight of thier idiocy bog down your effort to make a difference. It sounds like your a great mom on a very important mission. As for photos. I post as many as possible of my “peeps” They ROCk and I love for people to get to know them.:)

  19. I was doing research for a homework assignment tonight when I came across the picture of your daughter in her pink snow suit. If that woman didn’t think your daughter is beautiful, she was either blind or stupid. The smile on your daughter’s face brought a smile to mine.

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