Thursday, July 16, 2009

Shame on YOU

Eh, what am I still doing here...thought I said I was going off?? hehhe...

Technically, I am supposed to. However, I'm only actually leaving later this evening and since I have some time to spare. I mean, I've packed (read : close to 90%), the kids are with their grandma (read : I slept quite soundly last night) and the house is what it should be (read : there are still some lying here and there and I am waiting for hubby to get the job done when he comes back).

So, I thought I'd come by and tell you something. It could wait. Buuuuut decided not to because i.! As a parent, we want to teach our kids the right stuff : be good, have manners, be polite, be humble, treat everyone the same (ie not to discriminate), etc...and you'd hope that when you put your kids to school, you expect that their teachers will do the same thing. OK, so maybe not the same thing but you know, as educators, they are supposed to instill virtues on children right. Especially children.

This is what my cousin's wife had to go through recently. This is what she wrote (on FB):

I recently looked up a temp job at a child education centre. Ironically, I was not rejected cos I lack teaching experience but get this! "Sorry we cannot hire u cos it will be hard for us to explain ur (physical) condition to the kids". For those who know me, yes, I make ppl uncomfortable but discrimination at the roots (educators) is the cause of the misperception of society for ppl like me! Shame on these ppl!

I just wanna add on to this. All my life, many people have not looked at me with some form of perception, whether it's in a negative or positive manner. It's not to say that I am not used to a certain degree of discrimination, it's just that the episode at the education centre really made me feel sad, not for myself, but for the way some pockets of society are still so close-minded. Perhaps the education centre was making a wise business decision because they might think that I may just scare away all the kids, but this is not the way to teach our children who may encounter people who are disadvantaged, different or disabled, whatever way you choose to describe the 'disability'.

In general, different people react to me differently. Some are curious and start asking questions about my condition. This is the most healthy approach I think. Some just clamp up and don't know how to react. I sometimes want to laugh at those who react in such a manner because the uncomfortable feeling they have is really their own doing. Some are graceful in accepting and they are prudent when interacting with me. These are ones I truly am grateful for, and wish that most people can learn from there. Some are outright mean by treating me like an alien. Don't worry, I don't bite, I just write.

All in all, I still have faith in most people. My loving family and friends are more than enough proof of this beautiful humane qualities. I just wish that more Malaysians would be more open minded about their perception of 'disabled' people. Afterall, we don't want our children to be treated like aliens or bugs. I believe in educating our children at an early age not to be afraid of people who are 'different', explain to them why they are who they are, tell them there's nothing to be afraid of. Underneath it all, we all are just the same human beings, made from the same flesh and blood.

How would you have felt after reading something like this?

Let me tell you, she is NOT disabled. Nope, she isn't. In fact, she is very smart. Definitely smarter than me lah. But, yes, she talks kinda funny, she moves her head from side to side sometimes when she's a little nervous. It's something that I am sure if she had obscene amount of money, with the advent of modern science these days, I am pretty certain whatever the condition she's having, it can be fixed.

Yeah, I don't know exactly what it is but you know, for as long as I've known her, she's just "Aggy". I've never questioned, no one questioned (maybe some nosey aunts). She is as normal as anyone can be and I am sure her own family and friends can vouch for that. I can.

The best part is, you know, as parents, its no surprise that we are already scratching our heads on how best to explain to our kids about urm, indifference (not sure if the word goes but you get what I mean). We are not experts at this kind of stuff but you know, we try our best. To have someone or an institution who are supposed to be the experts (educator mah), telling you that they are clueless as well...what do you make of it? A slap in the face. Why go to school eh? (hahah...homeschooling moms will jump for joy at this :-D).

Anyway, I am just....and to think, this is a private institution..not go figure eh? Just amazing. Really.

OK, so again, I've gone on and on and I've gotta go to my uncle's clinic to get some pills for my ears. Gotta run. I'll talk to you later.


mommy to chumsy said...

sorry to hear that your cousin's wife had to go through this. it's sad. i don't think i want to send my child to this kind of education center which looks down on people who are different :( i wonder what sort of education are they giving to the kids? i hope your cousin's wife will be able to find a job a place where everyone is treated fairly :)

mott said...

That school should watch our ABC Kids channel. They have a deaf presenter. In UK, they have a disabled presenter (she was born without a hand).

Why do ur ears need pills?

Shireen Loh said...

Barb : Yeah, quite sad hor. Not to say she got 3 arms and 3 legs O_O

Mott : Oh, my ears pain mah when traveling so need those traveling pills (antihistamin).

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