Advice #1: How to Tell Other People About Your Sibling
Hi everyone! I hope you all are doing well. I thought that this topic would be the perfect way to actually start the help from the blog. As I got older, telling people about Cate was one of the hardest things that I had to navigate, especially in elementary school. The reason it was so hard or frustrating for me to tell people was I usually did not like their reaction. When people learn that you have a sibling with special needs usually their first reaction is to say "Oh I am so sorry," or even "aw that's sad." People do not mean to come across as if they are pitying you or being rude, but I just think they genuinely do not know what to say. The thing that bothered me was that I never wanted the pity because this is my sister, my life, and I would never change it because it has made me the person I am today. As I got older I learned that people just do not know how to react.
Ok back to the real advice part. I only bring up my sister and her disability is if it comes up by someone asking me about my siblings or if someone is coming over to my house. The way I usually would and still tell people is just by simply saying,"Oh my sister Cate has special needs," or "my sister is in a wheelchair because she has special needs." If you are honest and just gentle about how you say it, it makes for the easiest responses. In elementary school I was scared that my friends would think that Cate's special needs were contagious, so I would add in that it could not be caught.
Overall I really hope that this can help any of you reading this because this was one of the most confusing things I had to figure out, and I always wished someone would have told me how they handled it. I hope you all have an amazing day or night!