Dear “Experts,” Stop Putting Labels on Prem Kids

I am so cross guys, so bloody livid.

As many of you know, Littlest was born prematurely at 28 weeks.Compared to some ex-prem kids, I thank my lucky stars (and his) that he doesn’t have too many long term effects. Yes, he has lung disease and allergies, but most of this is controlled by medicines and hard work by us, making sure he eats a good diet and doesn’t go out in shitty weather in shorts and t-shirt.

In essence, he could easily be a lot worse. He has time off school, more so than the Government would like, but a)bollocks to the government and their figures and b) if their healthcare service was up to scratch and not happy to fob people off to do the bare minimum of actual healthcare in some cases, he wouldn’t be ill in the first place. (Insert fingers up emoji here).

Being premature already has it’s labels. Often people’s reaction to me saying he has health issues down to how early he came along is “wow, you’d expect him to look ill”. They then look a bit sheepish, and try and work out a different way of putting it, usually sticking with “oh, isn’t he tall?”

I’ve never expected special treatment when it comes to school or clubs, he goes to Beavers and he takes his medication, but that’s as a just in case way, not in a “he will definitely need this every night when he goes along”. It’s more likely that Littlest will need his allergy syrup as he has daft lapses where he forgets to check something is OK for him to eat (mostly if its a sweetie and his eyes overrule the sensible part of him).

I hate labels though- I always feel if you tell a kid constantly that they are breakable, they will be, they wont enjoy themselves, he wont go down a slide or run round playing footie for fear of collapsing. He is just as boisterous as his peers, but he knows the odd time when he needs to have a little rest.

That’s why today’s news that scientists have suggested that kids who are premature go on to be less academically solid, and will probably end up unemployed or in shitty jobs really pisses me off.

Apparently, they are destined to be poor as they are usually really rubbish at maths so can’t understand how many works.

Erm, fuck you scientists.

Frankly, I feel scientists are better suited and would be better serving the public finding cures for cancer and the like, but, instead, they decide to denounce all kids and later adults as being useless just by accident of an early birth.

Its bullshit too.

As I mentioned, my boy has time off school. I do get him reading and doing maths, but to be fair, when he is really unwell he is even so sleepy down to being up all night coughing and struggling to breath that he sleeps at a moments notice, or so drugged off his eyeballs on his strong as shit medication that trying to get him to sit still long enough to concentrate would be like (as Mini puts it) trying to give a dragon a bubble bath (I love that way of summing it up, so much).

In his old school, he pretty much got stuck on the sort of scrapheap no doubt these arsehole Scientists would prefer him to be chucked on. They fobbed me off that he obviously wasn’t going to be that bright as he had time off. I will never forget the look on his div teacher’s face when she called me over to impart how bloody epic he was at maths, doing maths in Year 1 at a Year 3 level.

Now, he does not get this ability from me. I am rubbish at maths. I hate it, I love the fact we have mobile phones with a calculator on or I’d be screwed. In fact, the boy is that shit hot at maths that he helps Mini with her maths homework as I am clueless.

Was I early? Nope.

Was Mini who struggles at maths a bit? Nope (they near on had to smoke her out, she was well comfy in there thanks very much).

Despite time off, my son pissed his Year 1 SATS. Highest mark in the year. No tutors either and with a teacher who basically couldn’t be arsed with him. He’s continued to do bloody well too, he went up leaps and bounds with his last teacher Miss P (who was a freaking legend) as she didn’t just write him off or label him as a lost cause down to his illnesses.

By labeling kids like my son, I feel like these scientists diminish his achievements. How would they explain that their pointless and frankly derogatory “findings” are blown out the park by Littlest and no doubt countless other ex-prems like him?

There’s no doubt that some kids who are prem do go on to have academic issues, but that’s the same with full term kids too. Not everyone comes out the womb with a doctorate level of academic knowledge, and any kid can thrive if in the right surroundings and with great teaching.

I do wish these bloody arseholes would go away, keep their petty stupid labels to themselves, and stop allowing some dimwits to pigeon hole kids like my son as being a waste of a teacher’s time.

My son is bloody smart.

And I’ll never let some dick in a white coat tell me, or him, otherwise.