I’ve recently become a contributor for The Mighty, a site that posts about life with disabilities and special needs. For those of you who aren’t bloggers, that means that they take some of their favorite special needs posts from my blog and re-post them to reach a greater audience. Recently there’s been quite the controversy going on with the site when they posted something that many found offensive. They have since taken the post down and apologized, but for many, the damage was done.
The whole controversy has highlighted the disconnect between disabled people and the parents of disabled children, which I’ve shared about before here on the blog. Many disabled writers began tweeting and posting with the hashtag #CrippingTheMighty discussing their issues with parent writers, lack of pay, abelism, and more. As the discussion developed, a hashtag has begun in The Mighty’s closed Facebook group for contributors. The hashtag, #WhyIWrite, has united both disabled writers and parent writers as we all share the reasons that we began writing and why we write still. I haven’t made one of these posts yet because I tend to be wordy.. I figured it would be better to turn it into a blog post.
Why I Write
I Write For Moms
I write for moms who just received their child’s autism diagnosis and don’t know how to handle it. I write for moms facing Thanksgiving who don’t know how to help their child handle the overstimulation. I write for moms who are overwhelmed by homeschooling. I write for moms who’ve never heard of a global developmental delay with no idea how it may affect their child. I write for moms trying to keep the peace in a split family. I write for moms who don’t know whether or not to support autism speaks (hint: please don’t!). I write for moms who simply aren’t that homeschooling mom. I write for moms who struggle with hearing that their child is disabled. I write for moms wondering how to stay productive while working from home. I write for moms who are ignoring their limits to take care of their children’s special needs. I write for moms on bed rest who feel like the only person in the world stuck in bed. I write for moms wondering if their children’s special needs are their fault. I write for moms who are harassed with annoying breastfeeding questions. I write for moms who are overwhelmed, unsure, and trying to do their very best for their kids, whether those kids have special needs or not. I write so that other moms might find support through something I have to say. I write for all moms, not just moms who have disabled children. I write for moms like me who feel overwhelmed, alone, and outnumbered all at the same time.
I Write For Me
Since I was little writing has been one of my favorite ways to express myself. My very first job was writing ebay product descriptions for my dad’s ebay business. When I became a stay at home mom I felt a little lost. I have always worked, so being home all day suddenly was making me crazy. I started looking for ways to work from home, and very quickly found that not only could I start a blog and do what I love, but people would actually pay me to write. Beyond giving me something to do and contributing to my family’s income, writing brings me joy. When a mom reaches out to me for help starting to work from home or an autistic teen thanks me for respecting the autistic community as a parent, all of the hours spent writing are worth it. I get to share my opinions and thoughts with thousands of readers every month. I have been able to connect with hundreds of bloggers that I never would have met without writing. My life is infinitely better since I found my voice and started writing.
I Write For My Kids
I write for all of my kids, not only the two with special needs. I write so that Mr. C will remember why we chose to homeschool. I write so that A-Man will remember I’ve always believed there are worse things than disabilities. I write so that Baby M can look back on 55 thoughts I had while breastfeeding him. I write so that Miss S will know about how we fought to keep her healthy through the Winter. I write so that my kids can look back and see that I found ways to work at home so that I could take them to their therapy sessions every week. I want my kids to know that their special needs never effected our family planning and that I never thought that loving them made me a Super Mom. I want the big boys to know that I did my best to handle holidays with their biological dad without fighting. I want them to read how I tried to see the gifts during our difficult homeschooling seasons. I write so that Miss S will one day read how I fought for a successful VBAC. Years from now I want my kids to be able to look back on my blog posts and read stories of their childhood. Many many years from now when they can’t ask me for advice, I want them to see my parenting advice in these pages.
Writing is what I do. It’s what I love. It helps me connect to other moms going through things that I’ve been through. It helps me feel a little more connected to the world. It helps me store memories for my children. This is why I write. Why do you?
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You articulated why you write very well. I love that you are writing as a legacy – what an amazing gift to give all of your children and love ones.
Lisa Diane Tummers recently posted…How to Start Having Your Best Year Ever
Oh thank you, Lisa. I think it will be incredible to know what they think about my blog as they get older!
One of the things that is so amazing about the web (and social) is the ability to connect with others we wouldn’t otherwise know. Good for you for writing on the Mighty (and on here) so that other moms, kids with autism and your own kids. I’m sure they all appreciate your words. :)
Thank you Liz! I do love that the internet has helped to connect our words with the people who need to read them so much more easily!
It’s so important to understand why we write! I’m a bigger as well and early on in 2015 I had to take a step back and really ask myself why I write! I was posting just to post (on my blog) but there was no passion or intention…taking that step back really helped me refocus and regain that passion :)
Oh I’m so glad that you took the time to reflect on why you write. Sometimes blogging can get so overwhelming that we’re just writing a post in order to get something posted. Glad that you’ve found your passion again!
Those are some fantastic reasons to write, and congrats on making an income for yourself through what you like doing, writing!
Thank you Jannine!
I love that you write for so many reasons – and that you share your gift with us! It takes talent to write as you do :)
Oh thank you Paula! You are so sweet. :) Happy New Year!
Through the same question that you asked yourself, you bring your reader who happened to be a writer back to the basic platform why they write. Why we write? I love your writing!
Rose Sahetapy recently posted…GADO GADO SALAD, THE INDONESIA SALAD WITH PEANUT DRESSING
Thank you so much, Rose!
Great post to set your focus for your blog. I think definiing why you do what you do it important. Gives purpose.
I agree, Jenn! Writing without a focus or a clear reason why can get messy fast!
Great post! I like that you have clearly outlined why you write, and seeing all of those great reasons is pretty fantastic too. I’m sure that focussing in on why you do it can also work as a motivating tool when needed!
It is super motivating! Thanks Sarah, :)
I can’ totally relate to this post. I have a daughter that’s been chronically ill and the doctors have not been able to diagnose her. I write every single day to tell our story in the hopes that it will help someone else.
Deb- It’s me, debcb! recently posted…Top 10 Chronic Illness Posts of 2015
Thank you for sharing your story!
What a lovely post I think it is so important to campaign for special needs rights especially since I have so many friends and family who have special needs and the way that they are treated sometimes is disgusting. I actually have a post coming up about disability in the media next week.
Ana De- Jesus recently posted…My New Years Resolutions:2016
Yeah, it can be really hard to see people with special needs being mistreated. Thanks for your thoughts.
This is wonderful. We do write for ourselves and not just for others. I never thought about how my kids will benefit from my writing. I know my students do.
My kids are my students, so we have that in common! It is so important to understand why we do what we do.
As a mom of a child with special needs who is now an adult, it is beautiful to see resources for parents. When my child was younger, everyone was labeled adhd, and that was not the case. I had to fight to get the right diagnosis. I love your posts. Will be back to read more
Eileen recently posted…Spinach Artichoke Stuffed Mushrooms
Oh Eileen, I’m so glad that you liked this post and that you’ll be reading. :) It can be so hard to find accurate diagnoses. Glad that you fought for your little one!
Your passion and reasons behind writing is wonderful! So lovely.
Natalia recently posted…How to Achieve All Your Goals in 2016 + Printable
Thank you, Natalia. You’re so sweet. :)
Knowing who you write for is really important! I’ve found that identifying my audience helps direct my focus even when my audience is just me!
Pam that’s a great point! When you know who you’re writing for specifically it certainly helps!
You clearly have a passion for writing. It’s interesting how so many things we do, we do for our kids.
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Jill that’s so true. We tend to live for our kids a bit, don’t we?
Beautiful post! I want to be helpful to other moms of littles, homeschool moms. I love the community that exists in this whole blogosphere and feel privileged to be a part of it!
Heather recently posted…A New Year’s Eve Reflection and Looking Ahead to the New Year
Writing should always have a purpose. I loved that you shared yours. I am sure it helping other moms and will give your kids something to look back on with pride when they are older.
Great job! fabulous post. :) keep up the great work.
I am conducting a survey into the news and opinion / journalism needs of the disability community and would really appreciate your help with designing a new service and website:
Feel free to send me an email at thisoutnumberedmama (at) gmail.com
Your kind of writing I don’t take issue with. I take issue with martyr mommies (and daddies) who write particularly invasively about their children in order to be pitied.
Thank you, that means a lot to me! I always try to keep my children’s dignity in mind as I share on my blog, and I do not want to be seen as a Super Hero for simply loving and raising my children.
I enjoyed reading this so much. It’s nice to find a mom who homeschools her special needs kids. It helps me not feel so alone in the journey
Tricia recently posted…2016 A Year to Cry Less and Laugh More
Oh Tricia, you are so not alone! I’m so happy that we were able to connect! I love your blog. :)
I haven’t heard about this type of affiliate writing until now, but what a good idea in order to get subjects you care about out to a wider audience. Wish you all the best of luck with it. :)