Do Not try to modify my behaviour.
Be still & listen. What you define as inappropriate
may be my attempt to communicate with you in the only way I can.
Do Not see me as your client. I am your fellow citizen.
See me as your neighbour. Remember, none of us can be self-sufficient.
Do Not try to control me. I have a right to my power as a person. What you call non-compliance or manipulation may actually be the only way I can exert some control over my life.
Do Not work on me. Work with me.
Source: A Credo for Support
The late Herb Lovett used to say that there are only two problems with “special education” in America: It’s not special and it sure as hell isn’t education. The field continues to be marinated in behaviorist assumptions and practices despite the fact that numerous resources for teachers, therapists, and parents offer alternatives to behavior control. These alternatives are based on a commitment to care and to understand. By “care,” I mean that our relationship with the child is what matters most. He or she is not a passive object to be manipulated but a subject, a center of experience, a person with agency, with needs and rights. And by “understand,” I mean that we have an obligation to look beneath the behavior, in part by imaginatively trying to adopt that person’s point of view, attempting to understand the whys rather than just tabulating the frequency of the whats. As Norm Kunc and Emma Van der Klift urged us in their Credo for Support: “Be still and listen. What you define as inappropriate may be my attempt to communicate with you in the only way I can….[or] the only way I can exert some control over my life….Do not work on me. Work with me.”