To think Down's Syndrome is given preference over other Learning Disabilities in the media

(21 Posts)
notthatagain Thu 27-Oct-16 20:57:08

I was wondering this today. There are plenty of articles discussing the ethics of terminating a foetus with Down's Syndrome, infact there's been entire programmes on it. There's articles about people with Down's Syndrome being supported into employment, Down's Syndrome people getting modelling contracts and articles on Facebook asking people to share pictures of Down's Syndrome babies if you think they're cute (which of course they are).

I completely agree with this and think it's great that we are become more informed about Down's Syndrome and taking steps to support people with Down's Syndrome live an independent life.

However, there's also a large number of Learning Disabilities that are never mentioned in the media, there's a huge number of chromosomal learning disabilities most people have never even heard of. There's children with Learning Disabilities who are not talked and very negative opinions on certain disabilities (a newborn baby's picture was remove from facebook as he had an Encephalocele and too many users had reported the photo).
I think there could be more reporting of other kinds of Learning Disability as they're equally as important as Down's Syndrome. I think there's far more coverage of Down's Syndrome than any other Learning Disability in the Media and it would be a good idea to discuss some other Learning Disabilities to raise awareness and understand of them. AIBU?

BoinkAlongQuietly Thu 27-Oct-16 21:01:00

I think DS is in the media currently because of a new test to detect it earlier. You did know about that, right?

Autism is given a lot of media attention, it seems to me anyway.

MatildaTheCat Thu 27-Oct-16 21:02:39

Problem is there are hundreds of rare syndromes and conditions causing both LD and physical disability and it's impossible for them all to be known about. Many LD are of unknown origin. DS is a relatively well known and understood condition which is easily recognisable so it's not surprising it has most media attention.

There are many worse things to deal with IMO but it's not hard to understand why it happens.

In old age almost all dementia is referred to as Alzheimer's yet there are actually many causes for dementia but less well known.

graphista Thu 27-Oct-16 21:08:27

It's tricky, down syndrome is both physically and philosophically better recognised but there are lots of different conditions that cause learning disabilities. Whenever a character with learning disabilities is introduced into a fictional storyline on tv it's almost always down syndrome. It would be good to see a greater variety of conditions portrayed and it would raise awareness for those conditions.

Msqueen33 Thu 27-Oct-16 21:11:41

I suppose there are lots of other conditions that are not as specific. I've got two dd's with autism and finally it's getting a bit of media attention. Some of it isn't the best i.e. The a word which I thought was awful but that's another post.

notthatagain Thu 27-Oct-16 21:16:12

Obviously there's lots of different Learning Disabilities but it would help if there was a little more coverage even though they can't all be reported on as much as Down's Syndrome. There just seems to be a huge gulf.

The new test can actually test for many other Learning Disabilities but that has also not been mentioned much.

Yes Autism also has a lot of media coverage, but I don't think that's in the same category as Learning Disability.

CoteDAzur Thu 27-Oct-16 21:19:40

"there's a huge number of chromosomal learning disabilities"

What is a "chromosomal learning disability"? confused

I think you mean chromosomal abnormality.

passingthrough1 Thu 27-Oct-16 21:20:31

Yes I think this, and it's not because of the new test as it's been like this for a long time. It's great that people can understand DS more but there are so many other conditions that we never speak of.

WipsGlitter Thu 27-Oct-16 21:20:32

If you read pregnancy threads on here it's the only thing people think about when going for testing.

Wonkydonkey44 Thu 27-Oct-16 21:30:04

As the parent of a child with DS I find the media coverage of Downs Syndrome upsetting. The coverage of the new test to detect it in pregnancy made me feel it was to get rid of an entire section of the population who were somehow not deemed right for this world or too much trouble for parents .
My child goes to a special needs school where Ds makes up a small amount of the school, lots of her class mates have autism etc .
DS may be given a lot of coverage but as a parent we see very little support from professionals and social services .
In fact my favourite ever phrase from social services was ' if I think it's bad not for provision then wait till she's an adult' .
Sorry not sure what I'm trying to say really , just that having a child with any learning disability is hard and having one with a name doesn't make it easier 😥

yesterdaysunshine Thu 27-Oct-16 21:32:50

I agree with you OP, but I think it tends to be because it's one of the more common ones. Same with cancer: breast, bowel cancers are well researched and well known but others not so much.

x2boys Thu 27-Oct-16 21:47:08

i agree my son has a chromosomal deletion these can cause a wide range of disabillities in ds case they think its the underlying reason for his autism and learning disabillities 1 in 150-200 babies are born with rare chromosme disorders like my son but you never hear of them i didnt have a clue about them untill ds was diagnosed.

x2boys Thu 27-Oct-16 21:48:55

my son also goes to a special school wonkey there are only two or three children with down syndrome in the entire school .

WipsGlitter Thu 27-Oct-16 21:52:17

wonky my son has downs and I was just thinking that the other day. I think he's the only one in his class with downs.

yesterdaysunshine Thu 27-Oct-16 21:52:41

I think Down's syndrome was a lot more common once.

I worked in a residential home as a young adult so about 2002/2003 for adults with learning difficulties and many had Down's syndrome.

graphista Thu 27-Oct-16 21:53:23

Is it more common? Admittedly only a brief Google but I can't find anyone that's compiled stats on which are more prevalent, you'd think somebody would know.

Wonky yes that sounds incredibly difficult but I wonder if it's even harder for parents of children with less well known conditions to access support? At least with ds lay people have a very basic idea of how it affects people.

cestlavielife Thu 27-Oct-16 22:39:45

My ds has a chromosome issue which is not down syndrome ...some 500 diagnosed worldwide so far.. Range of abilities like with ds. There are many such conditions. 22q deletion is as common as down syndrome. Yet mostly you only hear about testing for down syndrome and Edwards and patau. Tho now if there are indications markers and it's not ds a microarray might get performed ie more detailed chromosome test. but really terminating all down syndrome won't get rid of all ld syndromes so you quite right there should be more awareness and tolerance of all people with lds.whatever the cause.

x2boys Thu 27-Oct-16 22:46:28

indeed cestlavie we were not intially aware of my ds disabillities his deletion is on chromosome 16 on the p arm and he only had a microarray after his autism and learning disabillties were diagnosed however i know many people whose children have no known cause for their disabillities.

littledrummergirl Thu 27-Oct-16 22:54:05

I have a dsis with downs. Your title has made me cross, I need to work out why before I respond properly.
I think dsis would rather have no abnormality a less obvious disability so she wasn't abused in the street by strangers for looking different. Anything in the media that addresses this is a positive.

It was only in the 1980s that it was established that people with downs have nerve endings and feel pain so need pain relief for operations.

In the 1990s I watched a school mate of dsis die as she needed a transplant and was deemed high risk and unsuitable because she had downs.

The media is highlighting the fact that these are human beings the same as everyone else and helping to make things better. I don't give a stuff if you think it's too much.

franincisco Thu 27-Oct-16 23:01:18

I absolutely abhor those Facebook posts saying "like if you think children with DS are cute" I have a child with a visible difference and to me these posts somehow "other" them to the point of pathologist them. One appeared on my news feed recently showing a bride ( in a wheelchair) and a groom with the caption "give this man a like for not discriminating against disabled people hmm

Sorry OP but I think YABU as DS is one of the most common trisomies and raising awareness that having a baby with DS is not necessarily a death sentence can only be a good thing IMHO. I was very saddened to learn that 90 % of foetal diagnoses end in termination.

IamSwitzerland Thu 27-Oct-16 23:03:47

littledrummergirl it is because this is yet another bullshit clickbaiting disablist thread in the making with a nonsense talking OP just setting mn up for a big old nasty debate that is stupid and offensive.

Far too much of this crap on mn now and nothing done by HQ. This topic has been done to death and had long term mners struggling with disability leaving in droves yet this kind of title is thought appropriate and allowed to stand.

It is not appropriate and the OP should do some research if genuinely interested.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now