I am reading this after it was recommended to a co-worker who has no concept of when a parent is trying to help her better to understand the field she chose to work on. After multiple times of being warned that you never make poor comments about our clients or their parents no matter where you are do to the fact that you can't be sure who knows who or how people are connected to each other, she couldn't shut up about how a parent "abandoned their child" when they put them into a group home.
If I could rewind the scene and live it over again, here's what I would have said: "Is a child who cannot speak until the age of four not disabled? Is being locked in your own world, unable to communicate, interact in a meaningful way, or form relationships not a disability? If the slightest thing triggers a meltdown, if you self-harm, if you stim, if you don’t sleep, if you won’t eat, is that not a disability? Does having no self awareness and no sense of danger not count? Is being in nappies until the age of five not a disability?”