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Marilyn Dolmage never met her brother Robert, who died at Huronia Regional Centre at the age of 8, but she
Victoria Freeman’s book “A World without Martha: A Memoir of Sisters, Disability and Difference” is fundamentally about what it means to live in a world where only some people are deemed worthy of love. On the podcast, Victoria and I read excerpts from the book and explore the themes of this all-too-real story.
This podcast comes with a #triggeralert. It also comes with the opportunity to use Victoria’s story – and Martha’s story – as motivation, fuel, learning to make life better for those in our community who are othered and excluded.
Just like advocating for your child, sometimes unlearning and relearning how we see the world can be a messy, ongoing exercise. But if we are to move forward together as a society, we have to do the work. We have to get out of the wading pool, and dive into the big pool.
We are talking about F-words on the podcast, but not that one. Better ones. F-words that help us focus on the things our kids are, and the things our kids can do. These F-words are ones we can use to get doctors and therapists to see the whole picture of who our kids are now, and who they are becoming. F-words that lead to the good things in life.
In this episode, I’m talking with Samantha Noyek, Claire Davies, and Nora Fayed about the importance of researching the obvious, the idea of quality of life as it relates to kids with significant disabilities, and building a dictionary of our kids unique communication styles.
In Nora’s words: “We’re talking about involving these children in the world when society has not even thought to even consider them.”
“Can we realize that even though we’re loving our children, we can be doing them so much harm when we don’t address those beliefs, those worldviews, and those expectations: the biases that we have?”
La Shanda Sugg joins me on the podcast to unpack the relationships between trauma, bias, and othering and how this plays into all of our interactions with strangers, and with our own kids. This is a podcast you do not want to miss.
“I very happily describe myself as a lifelong rebel because the system never had any room for me.” This week on the podcast, Jean-Luc Martel shares his experiences with a broken educational system. Even in programs designed for individuals with disabilities, Jean-Luc found that so often there was not an appropriate understanding of how lived experiences and vulnerabilities shaped how he and his peers encountered the system. Jean-Luc’s story reminds us to continually lend a critical eye to the way services are delivered.
“It’s not the functional aspect of disability that prevents a good life. It’s the social isolation.” Sarah Buffie gets it, and on this podcast she unpacks a lot of really great information about how to re-focus caregivers on what really matters to both prevent and to heal trauma. Hint: it’s not more services.
Mary Vicario is a Certified Trauma Specialist with over 30 years of experience working with and training children, adults and people with developmental disabilities who have experienced trauma. Mary brings neurobiology to life using common language and interventions for people who have experience trauma, and those who work with or support them.