When we fail Bridget

This week we are starting at home services. It kind of scares me, because (honestly) you feel judged. I remember when we had Early Intervention Services. The mad cleaning before the nurse arrived. That was hard enough. But now we are bringing someone in to help us with Bridget’s behaviors.  Her compliance.

Because we are messing it up. 

It’s the truth.

We are failing her. We have her in special education. We have her in therapy 3-4 times a week. Yet she last night she went to bed without dinner because she refused to eat what I presented her with.  Because she wanted Fruit Loops and I cooked a dinner. She wears her hair in a bun every day because otherwise the meltdown isn’t worth the fight.  She can dress herself but we give in and “help” too often.

I’ve written about this before, on how by helping Bridget I am really stemming her quest for independence.

I want her to be independent. I want her to be able to navigate friendships. I want her to be able to go to the store and buy groceries (and not just Pop Tarts). I want her to be able to go to a restaurant and order her own meal. And pay for it.

I want her to live on her own.

Which is a dream.  A dream I acknowledge may not come true.

But if I don’t keep that dream in mind the smaller gains will not be possible.

So we will accept the in-home help.

We will do better.

I will also admit that it is times like this I doubt myself and kind of not like this life.

So I will accept the help.

Because if I don’t then Bridget will never be independent.

And that means I failed her.

I will not fail her.

4 thoughts on “When we fail Bridget

  1. Kristi Campbell

    You’re not failing, I promise. It’s a practical thing – the helping. Like, for OUR sanity. But that’s awesome you’re getting home services. And OMG to the cleaning before Early Intervention! 🙂


  2. Astrid

    I am so glad you are willing to accept in-home services. However, and I don’t mean this t o criticize you, I wonder why is it failing Bridget if she doesn’t become independent? I mean, I was raised with the expectation that I become fully independent despite my disabilities (some of which my parents are in denial of). I trie d and fell flat on m y face, then m y parents blamed me for not trying hard enough. I. Now accept. That independence In non-disabled ways isn’t for me and that’s okay. I forgot how old Bridget is, but maybe with her refuing to dress herself and refusing to eat wha tyou serve her, she’s showing a different kind of inde pendence, namely self-determination.


    1. firebailey Post author

      Criticize away! Seriously I don’t take your comments as criticism just another POV. And you are right, it’s not failing Bridget if she is not independent. But I do fail her when I know it is something she can do, but I take the easy way out and do it for her. For example, she recently learned to zip her coat. A huge accomplishment she has been working years to obtain. It takes her (what seems like) forever some days to zip. I’ve had to stop myself and let her take her time, be on her schedule, to be independent in that endeavor. It would be failing her if I knew she could do something but made her dependent on me instead. I hope I’m articulating myself. I never blame Bridget for not trying hard enough (I would never want her to think that). Thank you for that reminder, that I never would want to give her the impression she was not doing good enough. And I definitely love your last sentence, about self-determination. She has plenty of that 🙂 Astrid, sincere thanks for opening my eyes on how it could be interpreted.



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