Advocate…why we have to be outspoken!!!

20 weeks pregnant

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If you are a family member to a special needs individual you will know how important it is to be an advocate, to speak out for those who can’t or aren’t being heard.  I have always been someone who wanted to keep the peace and who wants to get along with everyone.  I used to worry what everyone thought of me.  That is one gift that parenting children with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) has done for me.  I no longer care what people think of me.  It is more important that they hear my plea.  That they hear how important it is to learn of the dangers of drinking alcohol of ANY sort of ANY amount while you are pregnant or could be pregnant.  I want them to know that it is not evil people or only people struggling with alcoholism who can have children with FASD…it is anyone who drinks alcohol while pregnant.  I want them to hear that my children are wonderful…they may not always act it or behave the best but that is because they struggle to understand and to fit in at times.

I have learned that I have to speak up a lot.  I have to try to educate even the people who don’t want to hear it or don’t believe it.  I want to have this world see through my eyes for one day or through one of my children’s eyes for even an hour.  If only they could understand what an incredible difference it would make if they attempted to understand exactly what it is like to be afflicted with FASD.  To live with people who try so hard and always feel they fall short.  To understand that mothers have to feel guilty as we always say this disorder is 100% preventable but in todays world is that true???  Really?  We still refuse to see this disability.  We refuse to acknowledge it in the DSM or in our court rooms.  We belittle it in the media.  We refuse to really look at alcoholism and its effects on people.  So we sling the mud but we don’t advocate or try to realize that in speaking this over and over that it is 100% preventable how we alienate those women who are seeking help and then feel only blame.

Some days I feel it is only a dream to make a difference and yet I still am never going to give up.  If I advocate and no one listens, well at least I know I tried.  So I guess I will keep talking and hoping that some day someone hears that it matters.  We all have to be outspoken and keep on saying it over and over.  The world will hear us if all of our voices begin to be raised together.


About fasmom

The adoptive mom to 12 wonderful children who are affected by Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder and other issues including Reactive Attachment Disorder, bipolar, schizophrenia, CP, epilepsy and oh the list goes on...The thing is these children have taught me things about myself I never knew and would not have missed out on learning. Married to an amazing man and enjoying life on a sheep ranch.
This entry was posted in Adoption, Childhood Mental Health Issues, Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder, Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, Foster Care, legal system, Reactive Attachment Disorder, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Advocate…why we have to be outspoken!!!

  1. Chris Branden says:

    I will always “defend” my child at any cost! In a perfect world there would be compassion for these damaged angels. Beautiful post!

  2. Ann says:

    If there are enough voices maybe one day we will bring it to the fore front of people’s attention – and give our children an even greater chance at shining in their communities!

  3. racquetballmom says:

    I’ve been trying to educate as many people in our community as I can. And since our 18 yr old Son has been involved in the Justice System and how unfair that he is being treated like a Criminal and has to go through the same legal process as other Criminals do I plan on educating the Police Dept, Sheriff’s Dept., the DA’s Office and the Judges by providing a detailed book on helping individuals with FASD. If persons with FASD commit a Crime and are found Incompetent to Stand Trial for the Charges then there is no reason why they should be held in Jail for months wasting tax payer money and costing Parents thousands of dollars in Legal Expenses. This is not doing the person any good they need to be someone where they can get Services that they need to help them stay out of trouble.

  4. Anne says:

    Hi, my name is Anne and I just stumbled onto your blog. I am a Mom to 6 kids, 3 by birth, 3 by adoption, and I/we struggle with some of the same things, incl ADHD, FASD, RAD, PTSD, depresion, etc, etc. I look forward to exploring your blog. I hope you might be able to hop on over to mine sometime for a visit! I’m at

  5. racquetballmom says:

    Anne I’m glad you responded. I just happend to received the blog letter and wanted to add my comment. Our Son is 18 yrs old and was dx’d with FAE and many of the overlapping disorders associated with it. I don’t usually blog I’m a member of a supprt group online for Parest who have older kids with FAS. It’s wonderful to meet other Parents online and chat with them knowing that there are other people who live with the same challenges others do so you don’t feel alone.
    We are our kids only Advocates and if we don’t speak out for them no one else will and they will fall through the cracks in our Society and it’s not fair.

    If you like you can email me at and I can put you in touch with some FAS Mom’s and Teresa Kellerman there are also other websites and support groups for younger kids you can check into.



    • fasmom says:

      There is a support group on Facebook that I started for families dealing with FASD. It is called Roots to Wings FASD support and advocacy. It is a closed group so that not all content is seen by public. We have birthmoms, adoptive moms, dads (of all sorts), adults with FASD. It is a great group and if you are dealing with FASD you are welcome to come.

  6. d says:

    100% preventable? So’s war. (Thank you Dorothy Schwab.)
    It’s not until the midieval mentality of ignorance is overcome by knowledge and understanding that we will be able to move in a meaningful way toward prevention. Prevention is a function of healing, as distinct from a superficial shame-based and ignorant reactive approach.

    • fasmom says:

      See this is the whole thing. I don’t feel that it is 100% preventable in our society. We are so alcohol based…we also are not taking into account that alcoholism is a DISEASE. I feel like we have to stop blaming. If we don’t start dealing with reality we will never make any strides. By the way, your book is a daily bible to me. Also hearing you speak was what started me on the path to starting a parent and FASD person support group…online and in my state. I never thought of myself as a person who could do anything real in this cause and well maybe I never will but I will certainly keep trying.

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