Am I Wrong For Asking My Daughter Not To Share A Room With A Special Needs Kid?

Source: Reddit

I (35f) have four kids, 10F, 6M, 4F and 1F. Our eldest, ‘Izzy’ is 10. She is a doll. My son, ‘Luke’ has autism and ADHD and while lovable, can be a bit of a handful at times. Therefore, Izzy is witness to both the fun and not-so-fun parts of neurodiversity and has developed saintly patience and a knack for helping special needs kids with a sense of maturity beyond her years.

Particulary notable is her kindness with ‘Maisy’, a girl in her class with autism and severe anxiety, which has worsened as a result of the tumult of the last few years. Izzy’s help to Maisy has been bought to my attention before and I am a super proud mama. Next weekend, school are taking my daughter’s class on a trip, and on Thursday, Izzy’s teacher asked her to be in a room with Maisy, saying it would make Maisy happy (Maisy has intense separation anxiety and has never been away from home before) but framing it as a choice.

Always obedient and wanting to do good by her teachers, Izzy agreed but came home crying saying that she didn’t want to be with Maisy, because she wanted a break from having to ‘be stressed so others can be happy’. This made my heart break, and I know more than anyone that my daughter deserves a chance to be a kid, as in all the lockdowns, she didn’t have her usual outlets of sports clubs and had to spend a lot of time with a cranky Luke whose routine had been destroyed and a toddler who was very excited to have her big sis at home.

While my husband and I always tried to do 1:1 activities, it admittedly got harder once his furlough ended and I unexpectedly got pregnant with our youngest. Luke also found the baby difficult sensory-wise, so whichever parent wasn’t tending to the baby often had to be elsewhere with Luke meaning not as much attention was on Izzy as we would have liked.

I feel so bad that my daughter has had a rough ride, and frankly want to give her a chance to be a little girl instead of an adult. I contacted her teacher, who is aware of the situation with Luke, who agreed that letting Izzy have a break would be a good thing. Today the school spoke to Maisy’s mum, informing her of Maisy’s room on the trip. I know the girls in the room and they are lovely but she was clearly unhappy. She asked me to ask Izzy again. When I said that it was her choice and I have to respect it, she sent a trade on how I was bringing Izzy up to be intolerant, how Maisy will feel that Izzy has abandoned her and how I would feel if it is my son. She is now considering pulling Maisy out of the trip as she feels she would not cope with her separation anxiety without Izzy.

My husband thinks that it is the school and Maisy’s mum’s job, not Izzy’s, to accommodate her, but her comments are ringing in my head. After all, I am not just Izzy’s mum, but also Luke’s and as much as I worry about her missing out, I worry about him being isolated too. I know exactly how Maisy’s mum feels, and how much it sucks, yet am not doing the one thing to alleviate her pain.

Am I Wrong?

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