Stranger At Target Tells Mom Stop ‘Spoiling’ Her Special Needs Baby

Kelly Drikes riled up the Facebook world after posting about her recent encounter with a woman while out grocery shopping.

Drikes was holding her special needs daughter Grace when the woman walked over to give her some parenting advice. The woman disapproved of how Drikes was holding her daughter and said she was spoiling the child by giving her too much attention. She argued the child would never be dependent because of the was Drikes coddled her.

With just a nod and a smile, Drikes thanked the lady and walked away gracefully. Later, however, Drikes wrote a letter on Facebook explaining her thoughts on the conversation and calling out the woman she met in the store.

Her words say it best:

“Dear Woman in Target,
I’ve heard it before, you know. That I ‘spoil that baby.’ You were convinced that she’d never learn to be ‘independent.’ I smiled at you, kissed her head, and continued my shopping.If you only knew what I know. If you only knew how she spent the first ten months of her life utterly alone inside a sterile metal crib, with nothing to comfort her other than sucking her fingers. If you only knew what her face looked like the moment her orphanage caregiver handed her to me to cradle for the very first time–fleeting moments of serenity commingled with sheer terror. No one had ever held her that way before, and she had no idea what she was supposed to do. If you only knew that she would lay in her crib after waking and never cry–because up until now, no one would respond. If you only knew that anxiety was a standard part of her day, along with banging her head on her crib rails and rocking herself for sensory input and comfort. If you only knew that that baby in the carrier is heartbreakingly ‘independent’ —and how we will spend minutes, hours, days, weeks, months, and years trying to override the part of her brain that screams ‘trauma’ and ‘not safe.’ If you only knew what I know. If you only knew that that baby now whimpers when she’s put down instead of when she is picked up. If you only knew that that baby ‘sings’ at the top of her lungs in the mornings and after her nap, because she knows that her chatter will bring someone to lift her out of her crib and change her diaper. If you only knew that that baby rocks to sleep in her Mama’s or her Papa’s arms instead of rocking herself. If you only knew that that baby made everyone cry the day she reached out for comfort, totally unprompted. If you only knew what I know. Spoiling that baby’ is the most important job I will ever have, and it is a privilege. I will carry her for a little while longer–or as long as she’ll let me–because she is learning that she is safe. That she belongs. That she is loved. If you only knew…”


Dear Sisters and Brother,

1.God calls you to be poise and calm, don’t let any bully or discourager get the best of you.

2.Don’t judge others, but instead pray for them because you never know what struggles they are up against.

3.God has a way of turning ugly situations into a platform to speak His truth.

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