Pour Your Heart Out: It’s Different

Pick up is a pain at school? Well, I’d just make mine ride the bus.

It’s a typical kid/parent problem with an easy solution, right? Last fall, my oldest totally tried to scam me when it came to whether he’d be a car rider or a bus rider, and his little butt ended up taking the bus.

But, it doesn’t work that way for every child.

Not even for every child in my family.

Sometimes, it’s different.

Even though the school is only about a mile from our house, the whole process of being a bus rider is too much for my kindergartener.

It means waiting in the cafeteria with all the other bus riders for about 20-30 minutes.

It gets really loud in there.

The kids sit in tables by buses, not by grades: so there’s lots of big kids mixed in with the littles.

And the teachers who aren’t out at the car line circulate or stand together at the front of the room.

The waiting, the noise, the mixed ages, the not-so-close supervision: it could spell trouble for any child.

But if you have a child like my kindergartener, who has PDD-NOS and ADHD and sensory issues, it’s different.

And then there’s the ride home: the bus that circles around before stopping at our house, making a five minute drive(if you get stuck at the light at the school) become more like 20.

Again: the kids, the noise, not as much supervision.

Could cause issues for any child, but for mine it’s different.

Riding the bus after the long wait- he might shut down… or have the opposite reaction and lash out.

Maybe he would refuse to move out of his seat or maybe he’d try to get off at the wrong stop because he wanted off the bus.

Even with his big brother there to help him.

All that so that I don’t have to take 10-15 minutes out of my day to make the trip to school and back?

Not worth it.

So the Well, I’d just make mine ride the bus comment from the peanut gallery doesn’t work because sometimes, it’s different.

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  1. I would do exactly what you are doing! Every child is different…every situation is different!
    You are a good Mom!

  2. Yes it is!!
    adrienne recently posted..A Weekend to RememberMy Profile

  3. Yes, it is. It is. 
    Alison recently posted..Great ExpectationsMy Profile

  4. We do a disservice to our children if we don’t parent them differently. Individual children = indivualized parenting.

    What you do totally makes sense.
    Making It Work Mom recently posted..School Picture Day – It’s AnnoyingMy Profile

  5. That’s one misconception about parenting that drives me crazy…that we all have to do it the same way. And that what works for one, works for all. You do what you have to do for your sweet boy. If it means driving an extra 15-20 minutes, then so be it. Because that’s what’s best for HIM.
    Courtney Kirkland recently posted..Ordinary EverydayMy Profile

  6. The Peanut Gallery always has something to say when it is NOT them! Forget them! They are not you or in your situation. Girl you gotta do what works for your family. Pick your baby up from school with your head high! Those peanutters may be jealous.
    Katina recently posted..Hugging the Porcupine-Pour Your Heart OutMy Profile

  7. You keep doing what’s best for your family.

    All kids are different. What works for one doesn’t necessarily mean that it will work for another.

    Unfortunately, some people don’t get that (ie your peanut gallery).

    Keep doing what’s best for your boy.

    Stasha recently posted..Acknowledge and Let GoMy Profile

  8. What works for one kid doesn’t work for the others. They are individuals with different needs. I would totally do the same for mine! ;)
    Barbara recently posted..Noah 9 monthsMy Profile

  9. We try to do one size fits all because it is easy.  Parenting is not easy.
    Wayne recently posted..Wednesday HodgepodgeMy Profile

  10. Well said. Another reminder that we shouldn’t be so quick to judge!
    Single Mom in the South recently posted..Proud Mamma!My Profile

    • It’s easy to think we have the solution when we aren’t in a situation and are only on the outside looking in!

  11. So often those remarks from the peanut gallery don’t apply. EVERY situation is different. EVERY kid is different. EVERY mom is different. It’s too easy to make a quick judgement without walking in another person’s shoes.
    Victoria KP recently posted..Charlotte: Looking for AnswersMy Profile

  12. Most of the time, it’s different. There is no solution that works for every kid (or that works for one kid all the time). Glad you are finding the things that work for you and your boys.
    Tricia recently posted..She loves meMy Profile

  13. On another blog I used to read (and still would if she were posting), the author wrote “what works best for each child this year). She was talking about schooling. She had one child in private school, a couple in public schools at different age levels, and some she was homeschooling. You know what is best for your child and act accordingly. My boys love the bus – thank goodness. If it set off issues for them though, I would do my best to drive them. On an unrelated note, our school district no longer picks up kids on the bus that live with 2 miles of school (even though there are no sidewalks etc).

    • Oh wow- I’m hearing that a lot about buses. The road that right by the school is not one I’d ever want my kids walking on. I’d never even want to walk on it.

  14. Your poor little guy – I would pick him up too. My youngest hated the bus. It made the whole experience of school upsetting. I picked her up as well. You are a fantastic mom!
    Emily recently posted..Umbrella: a protecting force or influenceMy Profile

  15. That’s one of the main reasons I don’t interact with the peanut gallery too often. Sometimes it’s unavoidable. I have found that it is how people compartmentalize things they don’t want to think about or imagine having to deal with. ” Well, if he were mine he would ride the bus” and then if he wouldn’t get of the bus or lashed out at someone they would be like ‘I don’t know why he is acting like this’ Great, great parenting, and the sad fate of a misunderstood child. The peanut gallery needs a visit from an angry elephant from time to time.
    Cindy Bryl recently posted..Different than expectedMy Profile

  16. JDaniel4's Mom says:

    I think you are doing the right thing.

  17. We all have to make the best choices for our families and kids. After all, you and your husband know him best and know what works for him. As he grows older and gains more understanding about his diagnosis and grows into learning strategies that might help him cope when he has a challenging time, maybe things will change. And may won’t. But either way he’s got you as his Mama who cares so deeply for him.
    NJ @ A Cookie Before Dinner recently posted..You don’t know what you’ve got till it’s gone.My Profile

  18. Why in the world do the kids have to sit and wait 20 to 30 minutes in the cafeteria?  Does it seriously take the buses that long to get there AFTER school gets out?  That’s just insane.  The buses are at school when Buddy’s bell rings.  They line up *maybe* five minutes beforehand.

    I get what you’re saying about it being different.  I’m sorry it just can’t be easier.
    Kmama recently posted..20 WeeksMy Profile

    • The elementary school uses the same buses as the middle school- and they have to wait for them to finish their routes. No clue why they haven’t somehow fixed this. Either change the bus times or change school times- b/c it seems like a lot of wasted time to me. 

      • That seems insane. They changed a lot of the school times in our district so that this type of stuff wouldn’t happen. The bus does get to school fairly early but that is so the children have time to get breakfast if they want it or need it, but the other children can go to class.

  19. Sometimes us peanuts (those who don’t walk in your shoes, LoL) get some really good ideas … talk to the school district. With diagnosis of PDD-NOS and ADHD, the district should have some additional services in place available for your child.

    • They do and could make different accommodations for him for transportation if we pushed it- but to be honest, it’s takes at most 15-20 minutes out of my day to go get him- usually even less. It doesn’t seem worth the hassle. I can just get him. 

  20. I hate the peanut gallery. It’s all part of the “mompetition”. I hear it all the time on facebook with every mom listing reasons she’s better then the next. I truly believe every family has to do what is best for them.
    Diana recently posted..PYHO – Whiny ButtMy Profile

  21. Every kid is different and I hate when other people try to chime in and act like there is one answer for every kid.
    Julia recently posted..At 22 MonthsMy Profile

    • So true. There’s not even one answer that works for all kids in my family, so why anyone would think that what works for theirs is the universal solution is beyond me.

  22. I totally get that. Sometimes it just isn’t a good set up for a kid and you have to adjust.
    Denise recently posted..PYHO: It’s Not FairMy Profile

  23. Truthfully I’d pick my kids up if I could. I remember being the bus rider. I was just an average kid and I hated it, so I think you’re every bit right in picking him up/dropping him off, especially since you can!

  24. Love visiting your Blog every Wednesday, Shell. And you’re right: It may be convenient for the parent, but not the child. I love that you put your kid first. Shows what kind of parent you are (a GOOD one!). Each child is different. Each parent loves them the same.
    Molly Jo recently posted..“What’s the Word?” Wednesday [Blog Hop]: September 19, 2012My Profile

  25. It is different. For different families and for different kids. The way I parent one child isn’t necessarily the same as the other.
    christine recently posted..Welcome to My MindMy Profile

  26. As my girls are grow, I am truly learning how each child is different. Very different. What works for one does not work for another.
    Your posts about your son are a wonderful reminder to have patience and understanding. And to realize one solution does not work for all.
    Carolyn recently posted..The New Soccer MomMy Profile

  27. Ahhh, yes. The ever knowledgeable peanut gallery. I get the comments too. I drive one of my kids to school in the morning because they cannot handle the morning bus. I’d love to just make them ride the bus and be done with it but sometimes that just isn’t an option. I wish people would mind their own business….or at least came with a mute button. Ha!
    Delilah recently posted..How We Saved Over $100 on CableMy Profile

  28. Makes perfect sense to me. You gotta do what’s best for your kid, You’re a good mom.
    Just Jennifer recently posted..Coping MechanismsMy Profile

  29. Shell – you are such an amazing mother and thank you for a great reminder…expecting my second, now, I keep reminding myself that this will be a different experience than it is with Gemma. It’s hard to visualize, now, but as mothers we need to be flexible and adapt to the needs of our kids.

  30. I rode the bus from the 2nd half of first grade till I was old enough to have friends that drove in high school. Riding the bus shaped so many of my insecurities… It’s the ultimate in clique behavior, with all the grades mingling in one small area with such little supervision. I’ll probably have my kids ride the bus, at least to start. But that doesn’t mean I’ll say definitively one way or the other that they must always ride the bus or must always get a ride! Every child is different. (So is every mom.)
    Caitlin MidAtlantic recently posted..Princess LauraMy Profile

    • My oldest rode the bus to start in kindergarten and then I started picking him up because there were a few instances of bullying due to lack of supervision. I decided it wasn’t worth it.

  31. My son has never been able to ride the bus. He gets motion sickness like you would not believe – especially with all the stop and go. Everyone thought I was crazy, but I didn’t want him to be known as “the puke-meister” or some such nickname for the rest of his life. We live in a small town so that kind of thing would follow him all through his school years. Sometimes I wished he could have ridden the bus – but in the end, I know I did the right thing.
    Kris C recently posted..My Favorite ThingsMy Profile

    • Such a good mama!

      I used to get crazy car sick when I was younger. I had to sit in the front of the bus and start straight ahead or I’d get sick. Not the cool place to sit!

  32. That’s right, it’s different. Mamas with kids who are different make tough choices every day. It can be especially hard when your little one doesn’t look so different and people don’t understand but always remember that there are lots of us who do. You’re doing a great job, mama!

    • YES! There’s nothing obvious for people to cut him a break, so sometimes people judge, thinking he’s just a brat. It drives me nuts. 

  33. Every single child is so different and the circumstances pouring into them are too. You are doing an awesome job Mama! ((HUGS)) from afar! :)
    Paula @ Simply Sandwich recently posted..My Story: Round Two of the SandwichMy Profile

  34. You are a great mommy to your children, Shell. Don’t ever let anyone convince you otherwise. Sometimes you just have to make the decisions that work for YOU and your little ones individually. XOXO
    Charlotte recently posted..a home run. literally.My Profile

  35. Also I’ve missed you lots.
    Charlotte recently posted..a home run. literally.My Profile

  36. Each child is different…I would do the same thing if I were in your shoes!
    Natalie recently posted..Wordless Wednesday-Go Team!My Profile

  37. Amen, my friend. As the mother of twins, boys who to all the world should be “the same” I see this every day, that everything is different, the way they see the world, the way they live, socialize, learn etc..and what is good for one is not GOOD for the other.

    I find myself, taking a deep breath and reminding myself of these things, getitng in touch with that thought..
    that it is OK for them to be different.

    AMEN, Shell, AMEN.
    Kir recently posted..PYHO: The Post That Just Might Change the Way You See MeMy Profile

    • Isn’t it so funny how even siblings(or in your case twins!) can be SO different? And if they are so different, then how people think their solutions for their kids would work on every child is just beyond me.

  38. People always have something to say, don’t they? I think it makes perfect sense that the bus isn’t the best choice for him. Each child needs something different; some of the differences are bigger than others, but that doesn’t mean people should judge the choices you make for your family.
    angela recently posted..What She LeftMy Profile

  39. I’m a pick-up mom all the way, Shell. Every child’s needs are different, you’re right, and kudos to you for recognizing that and giving your son what he needs.
    Becky K recently posted..The Foolproof Cure for HolleringMy Profile

  40. Even though I consider carpool one of the inner circles of Hell I remember the bus and many situations and people involved with being a bus-rider as a child , so my eldest didn’t ride the bus until high school, and my younger son didn’t ride until middle school (and then only because he insisted).  It’s just not worth the stress on the kids.

    • I was cussing people out at carpool today. No clue what the extra insanity was about- but it’s still better than my kids riding the bus!

  41. How easy for those who don’t know to judge.  We, the parents, know or at least hope to know what’s best for our kids, and do what we can to make things that may be troubling less. 
    For anyone who doesn’t get that, well, screw ‘em! 
    Jackie recently posted..Wedding WithdrawMy Profile

  42. Amen, Sister! This is just proof again that what works for one family doesn’t work for another. My oldest took the bus for years. He’s a freshman and we drive him now. He needs more time in the morning to do his treatment so I don’t care if people think we baby him. They have NO idea what goes on in this family. G00d for you for knowing what your child needs and giving it to him!
    AnnMarie recently posted..The Anti-Social Bug Bit MeMy Profile

    • Doesn’t it just make you crazy- the way that people throw in their two cents when 1. they don’t know the situation and 2. it doesn’t even affect them anyway.

  43. For real, girl. You do what you need to do for your kid. :) 
    Andrea recently posted..I’m turning into one of those moms!My Profile

  44. I am completely with you on this one. Every child is different, every situation is different. I hated riding the bus as a kid – no fun at all. Bless you girl! 
    Ms. Kathleen recently posted..Are You Offended? Part 1 – Healing and Deliverance seriesMy Profile

  45. Parents know their own children better than anyone else does. The peanut gallery just needs to keep quiet. This is right for you and your son. Enough said.
    Patricia P recently posted..Sun Room Makeover Times TwoMy Profile

  46. We don’t even have the bus option here- and I while I am sitting in the long line of cars I like to complain about it– but if we did have buses in the end I really don’t know if I would use them or not, especially with my oldest.   Every child is different
    Emmy recently posted..When Life Get’s Busy….My Profile

  47. Like Emmy, no bus option here…unless you live a certain mileage over(can’t remember how far) and you PAY for it.  Yep…that’s CA for you.  I won’t get into it.  My son has never been diagnosed with Sensory issues, however he is extremely high strung and def easily distracted–again never been diagnosed for ADD/ADHD but I totally get what you are saying.  When we lived in VA and buses were an option, my girls rode the bus.  It was wonderful.  Now…it’s not an option because of money and well my son just couldn’t do it anyway.
    Lourie recently posted..What I Miss, What I Don’t Miss…My Profile

    • Totally crazy about the buses!

      Sometimes I really wish it were possible to just send mine on the bus, to be honest. It just isn’t what works.

  48. God Bless You for doing exactly what’s right for your child no matter what anyone else chooses to say or think! You know him and his needs far better than they do!
    Beth Zimmerman recently posted..Pray – Praise, Talk, Listen, and ObeyMy Profile

  49. You are so right, it’s different for every child, every parents and every situation! Hats off to you for doing what you know is right and not caring what the peanuts gallery says, because they just don’t get it!
    Queen Bee recently posted..Fall is comingMy Profile

  50. Sounds like some very excellent reasons for opting out on the bus!

    Pierce’s favorite part of the day has been his bus ride, but he had a really special connection with the bus driver. Last week was her last day, though, and now there’s a new driver and she’s young and not as caring. I’m hoping it’ll work out fine but Pierce sure is missing his Miss Judy.
    Lisa @ Two Bears Farm recently posted..Willie and Baxter Find a Home – Rural ThursdayMy Profile

  51. I don’t know why it’s so important to other people that your child ride the bus. That’s your decision to make.
    Honestly, sometimes I get SUPER irritated at other people’s “helpful” suggestions.
    Teresa recently posted..It’s Not Easy Being GreenMy Profile

  52. The bus is hard for kids like ours for sure.  For Sam , being in a small school, the bus ride is easier for him then having me pick him up. We have toyed with the Idea of special ed transport, Im just not willing to go that far…yet
    Annemarie Vinci Chagnon recently posted..Sometimes, I don’t have the answers.My Profile

    • Usually, I can leave my house, do pick up, and be back in about 15 minutes. It just doesn’t seem worth it for me to push for special accommodations for him when my schedule allows me to go get him, you know?

  53. Every child is different and you make the right choices for yours!
    stephanie @ babe’s rockin’ mami recently posted..Dr Nate OBMy Profile

  54. I can totally see your point of view on that. I have to take my kids to and from school as there is no bus and it’s almost an hour round trip but I’m not complaining… they love their school. At the old school we had to walk – no bus within a 2 mile radius from school!!! I miss that sometimes though… our walks or bike rides in the morning and afternoon! 
    Susi recently posted..A farm in suburbia {Heritage Hen Farms}My Profile

  55. did people really give you shit? Ugh, this is why I don’t like anybody…ha!
    My school is a five minute drive and I totally do drop off and pick up….
    we’d have to leave earlier in the morning just to make it to the bus, and honestly, I don’t know if I want the kids getting used to the bus because once Brooke starts school, I don’t think I want her on the bus….I’m top scared kids will make fun of her
    Not a Perfect Mom recently posted..Vaginas Rule and Balls DroolMy Profile

    • It seems like the worst of bullying tends to take place on the bus- not as much supervision. 

      People seem to like to give advice that works for their kids, whether it’s the bus or with something like food – like saying “well, I just make my child eat what I serve!” Um yeah, I do that with my oldest and youngest, but Dear Lord, it just does NOT work with my middle. A bunch of little things like that where it’s just different with him and so we make exceptions sometimes. 

  56. There is no one solution that applies to all families and all kids. We each do what is best and the peanut gallery can shut it. 
    Jessica recently posted..Put That In Your PurseMy Profile

  57. My girls ride the bus, don’t have sensory issues and on 3 out of 5 days say that it is too loud or have a story to share about someone’s behavior. I think you are doing the best thing for your son…especially as a kindergarten. It may be a pain to make the trek to/from school twice a day but you are saving him and yourself from a lot more pain if the rides go badly.
    Kristen recently posted..Finding The PositiveMy Profile

  58. My son has Aspergers and sensory issues and was able to ride the bus. BUT he was always up front in case trouble arose. If he went in the back, I’d worry. You did the right thing for your son. We moved and now we’re able to walk to school so that’s not an issue. But I’m still there waiting in the cafeteria for my five year old, since she’s still too little to walk alone.
    Amber recently posted..In College? Check Out CampusBookRentals.Com!My Profile


  1. [...] But I understand that it’s different and just not that easy when you are dealing with a special needs child. So when I see a mom having a rough day, I don’t assume I have the solution or that [...]