Over the years, my son received many invites to his classmate’s birthday parties. Up until last year he had one or two invites a month. However, this school year, he received only one. I knew there would come a day that my sons neurotypical peers would notice that he is ‘different’, I just wasn’t prepared for it to happen so soon.
Max doesn’t know he’s been excluded, so I take solace in the fact that his feelings haven’t been hurt. It hurts me more than it hurts him.
I’ve looked at this from many different angles:
A) When writing out the guest list, did the parents ask their children who they did and did not want to invite to their party?
B) Have the parents observed Max with a support worker in class and don’t feel comfortable including a ‘special needs’ child?
C) Did the children flat out say “I don’t want to invite Max”
D) Or could it simply be that I’m overreacting?
D is a possibility, but the pessimist in me believes that A, B or C are more likely scenarios.
Max used to be invited for playdates, those have come to a halt as well. I suppose his differences are too great and the children have just outgrown him. True, Max has little interest in socializing with his peers, but it’s not because he doesn’t want to have friends, he just doesn’t have social skills at this time.
You know what I say to these people? It’s your loss. You’re missing out on a really bright, funny, sweet and spunky kid. He has a heart of gold and wouldn’t hurt a fly. His laugh is contagious and his eyes light up with excitement when he sees a delicious piece of birthday cake. My heart breaks a little because he hasn’t been able to experience this as of late.
Until Max understands – and cares – that he’s been snubbed, I will continue to focus on making him happy. His happiness means more to me than anything in the world.
This is our reality.