Do you think public restaurants should have a "calming room"?
I've heard that some churches are offering a separate room with intercom/window type set ups so people who have neurologically challenged children can sit with them in seclusion but still enjoy the service. I've heard they are working out well but are not common as yet, perhaps due to cost of space? I'll call it a "calming room" for autistic/Tourette children. I ask this with compassion because I heard it's so great for the parents and the congregation. So why not restaurants and hospitals? They have to accommodate other physical challenges?
Yes, that would be amazing for the family and children. What a great idea. Yes, there is the issue of space at each restaurant, as well as just how many of such families would frequent the particular restaurant. If they advertise their accommodations, then more would frequent the specific restaurant that provides such. I have seen this in churches. You may be on to something here. I think all hospitals should make such a room without a doubt there, as there should be plenty of space and it would provide a great deal of relief for the families to have such a place.
Thanks for being a visionary!
God bless, Faith Reaper
Well I don't know. I have feelings on both side of the issue. I am concerned about Hiding people away because they are inconvenient or not up to our standards. Something about that bothers me.
My son has Autism. When he was in pre-k, the church I attended at that time had a nursery and toddler room for children up to age 5. He wasn't 5 yet. There were usually just a few children in the room, babies were kept in a separate room. He never had any problems, until one day, a crayon rolled under the little table where he was coloring. He climbed down to pick it up. A teenager who was never trained to work in the nursery was filling in. She told my son to come out from under the table. It frightened him. He got scared. He moved closer to the back wall. She tried to lunge at him and grab him (from eyewitness accounts). He scratched her and started crying. She pulled him out from the table and slapped him as I walked in.
No one apologized to my son. No one apologized to me. I tried to get both sides of the story and the teenager was rude to me. The following week, I suggested that I could stay in the empty room adjoining the nursery with my son, where there was a speaker piped in so I could at least listen to the sermon. I was told it would be best not to bring my son to church at all ever again. So I find it refreshing that some churches are open to this idea.
As far as restaurants go, it's most challenging working with children with special needs including children on the Autism spectrum. Therefore, what I do, is use opportunities to take my son to restaurants to teach him how to interact in a social setting. It has really paid off. We take him to the restaurants he is comfortable with. Some have too many loud noises, too much light, etc. It was also very difficult taking him to Walmart when he was younger before he was diagnosed. The stimulation was too much for him to deal with because of sensory issues. But he is much better now. Through taking him by the hand and teaching him, even if it was 5 minutes at a time, he is now able to walk through Walmart with me without reacting to the environmental stimuli.
There are people that do that for a living, take children on the spectrum out to public places to teach them how to interact in social settings, but unfortunately we have nothing like that here in my state. We have had my son in private occupational therapy for several years. At school, he wears a weighted vest, and he sits in a rocking chair because rocking helps him process information.
Thanks for sharing. I'm sorry any church treated you that way.They weren't about God's business, were they? Aren't therapists great? I hate that it costs so much & often not covered. So are you saying you don't think it necessary for restaurants?
I think there should be more Autism safe places in general. In some states there are places just for children with Autism to play, eat, socialize. It's very expensive so we don't have a lot of places like that where I live.
Hi BuffaloGal1960. I think this is a wonderful idea. As is said elsewhere though space and cost dominate everything these days. The right people would have to be there to assist, unfortunately we cannot live on love alone.
Sure, if they want to. I would never expect a restaurant to provide one though.
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