Social impact and lifestyle changes


Lillian: But I think having a disabled person in a family network—so what do my siblings or his siblings think about our situation and our son?—because I think when you think about caring for older adults, like when you care about your, when you’re caring for your parents who are aging as caregivers, there is a whole set of factors that emerge, right? So, who becomes the good daughter or the good son who’s looking after the parent and making those sacrifices in terms of that, and how do those play out and how do you balance that between. But this is a different kind of orientation when you have a child that you’re talking about. So, Michael was mentioning about our older son, who initially was really—I mean, when he was very young he was, I think I mentioned, at the birth he was quite visibly concerned, and when he had to come in and sort of look at this infant with all these tubes, he was quite concerned and upset by that. I think it was a bit traumatizing for him. And then he went through a period of being kind of, “Uh yeah, that’s my disabled brother,” like he’s nothing, He’s just kind of like not interested. And…

Michael: Benign indifference in a certain way.

Lillian: Benign indifference, yeah. Not, not, not…. He didn’t want to try and put a blanket over his head. I mean, like siblings do that sort of thing to one another, but he didn’t want to do anything that way to Oliver. But I think he did feel very much like a lot of attention was devoted to his brother. And then when Oliver first started at the special school I was telling you about, they wanted to try a day of integration because integration is sort of where everybody’s at. So, they wanted to try to integrate him into the local school, which happened to be the school that his big brother was at.

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