Hudson Valley Parent

HVP January 2019

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Page 22 of 35 n Hudson Valley Parent 23 Protect your child The best protective gear to face the insensitive remarks people may make is to arm your child with coping skills. You cannot shield him from the ignorance that ensues because he does not look like you. You are not obligated to answer anyone especially an inappropriate stranger. If it is a classmate or coworker you may choose to educate them in a respectful way. "You do not have to make yourself uncomfortable to deal with someone else's curiosity," says D'Arcy. "If someone makes an insensitive comment in front of your child sometimes you have to be the bigger person and get past it because you are the example," says Drayer. Tracy Weir Marek of Poughkeepsie is no stranger to this. She says, "I often get asked if my child is mine because we don't have the same skin. When I go to pick her up from a group for the first time, they assume I am coming to pick up a child with dark skin and are surprised when I am not." D'Arcy uses the example of a lady in the checkout line at the supermarket who may ask if your kid is yours as a challenge that may come up. If you are not in the mood to engage in conversation you can smile, say yes and turn your back. "Kids are curious about cultures and at times will point out differences in physical features in our family and that's okay. Kids are still learning," says O'Brien Edwards. "There are so many types of families out there, it's hard to wrap my mind around why any adult would be curious about families that are different than their own. Shouldn't we just accept a family for who they are?" It's not easy, and that's okay All families have challenges, but the challenges within an interracial family can be quite different. Goretti Vianney-Benca of Hyde Park says, "I would like it if people did not refer Early Intervention Services Early Intervention Services 75 CRYSTAL RUN RD., SUITE 201 MIDDLETOWN, NY 10941 845-692-4391 • "Making the Future Brighter, One Child at a Time!" Our mission is to provide quality Evaluative and Therapeutic Early Intervention Services We Provide a Full Range of Services: Physical Therapy Occupational Therapy Speech Therapy Psychological Services & Special Instruction Services We tailor these services to specif ically target each child's needs with an Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP) (Continued on Page 24)

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