Which Clothes Is the Emperor Wearing?—Part 2

June 13, 2012

Do you remember “The Emperor’s New Clothes” by Hans Christen Anderson?  The story about an emperor and his subjects accepting the assurances of two “tailors”  that their products were so special that they were only visible to competent and intelligent people.  Upon seeing the empty hangars, everyone, including the emperor, silently questioned their capabilities and feared the consequences of voicing them.   The story ends with a child speaking the truth without hesitation freeing others to do the same.

If the emperor had been an astute consumer he would know which clothes he was wearing in the parade and who made them.  He would have done his homework: learned about tailors, what to expect when hiring a tailor, checked references and credentials of more than one tailor, sought the opinion and experience of other emperors before making a choice.  After hiring the tailors, the emperor’s job was to hold them accountable for their work.  Furthermore, the emperor would have trusted what he saw in the mirror and immediately fired the tailors.

How do families living with neurological differences make choices?  Parents and caregivers know that each professional they hire makes a difference for their loved one.  Like the emperor, it may be tempting to believe you found the answer.  Even so, do your homework. Confidently expressing concerns, questioning what you don’t understand, participating in the conversations is how to get the best care possible for your loved ones.  Competent professionals invite your continual collaboration and welcome your questions and concerns.  Be assertive.

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