FASD Awareness Day

On FASD awareness day it really has me thinking. All of the frustration and anger that could be avoided for someone simply by us knowing that a different approach is needed. 

Think about this:  For all of us less that technologically inclined people. Your computer suddenly stops working and that little circle on the screen keep loading and loading. This has been happening for an hour and we need the computer to work ASAP to meet our deadline!  How do we react? Frustrated? Yelling at the “ stupid computer”? Throwing your hands up and walking away? Keep clicking that mouse to try something else to make it work but actually making it worse? Well. The same reaction occurs when someone who has FASD is overloaded with information. 


Just like the computer when the brain is given too many tasks to complete at once or too many instructions,it needs to catch up and figure out what you are asking it to do. When the person keeps adding information the process gets more frustrating and slower. The computer( brain) needs to sort through everything it has been given. Like that little loading circle the brain just can’t keep up with the information being put into it and the appropriate response it should take causing the brain to become stuck and react in frustration and anger. This is where you see the outbursts occuring. For the person making the requests, we often see this as a problem and not our fault as the person giving direction. Guess what! We often contribute to this issue simply by giving too many instructions, too quickly and without processing time.  Remember that the person can process the requests you are asking or trying to communicate but the information needs time to be processed. You know those lovely computer errors and coded error messages? When we speak it can mean as much sense as that computer coding does to us...none! But when someone breaks it down for us and makes the coding ( wording) make sense, we are able to follow through with the request for information or action without frustration for the people experiencing FASD and the person giving the instruction or information.  So next time your seeing frustration and anger, maybe it’s time to ask yourself what told you are playing in this reaction. 

The hard part about FASD is it is an invisible condition that affects 4/100 people in Canada! So how do you know your are needing to change your approach? There is training for that!  If you are interested in knowing more about FASD and the impacts that it has, how to support someone and what we can do together to reduce the chances of someone acquiring FASD. Reach out! My team would love to provide you free online training! Email me at Shannon.harris@bhssa.ca for more information! Together we can make a difference! When we know better we do better!! Oh and did I say FREE training?  Sure did!

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