Neurotypical- What’s that?

Sharon Galitzer (Physical Therapist) by Sharon Galitzer (Physical Therapist) Additional Needs

Sharon Galitzer (Physical Therapist)

Sharon Galitzer (Physical Therapist)

I'm a pediatric physical therapist and also the sibling of an adult with special needs.

Neurotypical is a catch all phrase for anyone who is not atypical. 

I prefer the term neurodiversity. 

Neurodiversity is another opportunity for us to make room in this world for children who are ‘different’. 

When I use the term different I’m referring to children who have challenges with either communication, mobility or understanding, or all of the above. 

The world will not make room for these children unless we, as the caretakers and the therapists, believe this wholeheartedly. 

Every child thrives with love, every child benefits from positive reinforcement/as well as understanding inhibitory cues. 

Every child enjoys interacting with something or someone at different points of the day. 

Every child has the ability to interact with their environment if we, as their caretakers and therapist can create an environment that is accessible to them.

If you will it, it shall be. Necessity is the mother of invention. 

Find and create a motivational and supportive team who shares your vision for your child. 

Think outside the box and constantly create opportunities to introduce new challenges, you may be surprised. 

Always, read your child’s cues and concentrate on activities that motivate them.

We are all different. We all have likes and dislikes. 

I believe that in the era of diversity, inclusion and acceptance, it is also a great time to create a platform for the world to start thinking more globally about education, product design and accessibility, and even clothes.

For example, there are certain major name brand shoe companies who have started to make shoes that can accommodate an AFO. WHY SHOULDN’T YOUR CHILD WHO WEARS AFO’S BE IN STYLE LIKE THEIR PEERS!! 

It’s often up to us to understand how each child is a capable learner and to adapt the environment in order to help them relay to use what they know in a verbal or non verbal way.    

Learning occurs throughout the day. 

It is a group effort form the teacher, an aide, a school, a community, therapists, friends, extended family and everyone who is in contact with your child to make their environment interactive and accessible because everyone will benefit from this mindset.   

This process starts at home. 

I know that these past several months have probably been the most challenging, and in some ways, the most rewarding times of being a parent of a child with special needs. 

How has your consistent attention and caretaking impacted your child? 

I bet you have seen some differences.  Keep your eye on the prize, but celebrate the small victories along the way. 

I’m just sayin, we’re all different. 

Technology and new products are making it easier to address these differences. 

Seek out a team of players that will support your vision to help your child achieve their potential. 

Check DIY websites of other creative parents. 

Make sure you take care of yourself (mind and body).

Try to celebrate these differences, see the potential in any of these differences, and march forward. 

I started this blog because I felt that parents had a lot of questions that went unanswered.

Wishing everyone a brighter year, a year that builds on the self-realizations of this year, a celebration of a child’s ‘neurodiversity’, and an ability to stay steady on this marathon of parenting a child with different needs because this may be one of your greatest challenges in life, as well as your greatest success!

You’re not in this alone. 


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