IF I Only Had A Wand: A New Year’s Wish for FASD

Happy New Year 2015

One day last year, a wish for FASD occurred to me.
I was attending a great foster care training and another participant had a coffee mug with a quote I hadn’t heard but immediately liked:
“It would be so nice if something would make sense for a change”
~ from Alice in Wonderland, 1951 Disney movie

I’ve heard people say such things after they’ve fallen through the rabbit hole of FASD. Honestly, that basic sentiment has skipped through my own head a few times when I’ve found myself there:
“It doesn’t make sense that I have to remind you to do this chore over and over and over.”
“It doesn’t make sense why you’re late coming back from the neighbor’s house every night, even when wearing a watch.”
“It doesn’t make sense to sneak into my closet at night to sleep instead of staying in your own nice bed.”
“It doesn’t make sense for you to hide your homework instead of turning it in for credit.”

There are infinite variations, and any single one can be frustrating. Experience them multiple times over months, and you’ll just feel angry, overwhelmed, and burned out.
So, my wish this year is that these behaviors will make sense to folks for a change. Then we could prevent burnout for caregivers and professionals, and promote harmony toward those with FASD and help them be more successful. How nice that would be…

But here’s the catch: Every one of those FASD behaviors already makes perfect and total sense.

The challenge is we don’t often remember or understand what really causes those FASD behaviors. Those situations are accurately explained by memory problems, poor sense of time, sensory sensitivities, and learning disabilities, respectively. And the root cause of them all? Prenatal alcohol exposure and trauma.

Do we remember this enough? Oh, if I only had a magic wand…

So, may 2015 bring peace and blessings to you and yours.

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