Raising Special Needs Kids

Just need to vent!
October 3, 2012 at 3:33 PM

I am taking online classes towards my bachelor's degree in Education.  In my educational psychology class, one of our discussion board questions was:  what do you think has a bigger influence on our development?  Genes or Environment?  This one girl put as her answer that she believes that environment is the only thing that determines our development.  She said that genes only account for our looks.  I started shaking when I read that from how upset I was, and I apologized to her before I wrote her a lengthy response to it.  Yes, environment is important to our development, but genes are so much more than looks.  My son has a rare chromosome disorder, where the geneticist said that he is unbalanced because of it, and all of his issues are contributing factors to his chromosomes that are not normal.  He has autism, ADHD, ODD, and a severe speech delay.  Just had to vent that there are people out there that think that genes have no influence on our development!  It is what we are made up of!


  • natesmom1228
    October 5, 2012 at 10:34 AM

    That is frustrating. She is entitled to her opinion. Was she at least ok with your response? There are too many people who have no desire to see other peoples sides.

  • sammygrl77
    October 5, 2012 at 10:44 AM
    I'm always shocked at how uneducated people are, even though I shouldn't be. I hope you were able to change her mind.
  • mammakittykat
    October 5, 2012 at 5:06 PM

     Wow. While enviroment has a lot to do with developement Genetics plays an even bigger role. My kids all have developemental issues due to a gene deletion along with delays resulting from eviromental factors also. The two most of the time go hand in hand.

  • jjamom
    by jjamom
    October 5, 2012 at 5:20 PM
    I can see her thinking that environment has a bigger influence, but not that it is the only influence -- unless she doesn't know anything about how genes and chromosomes work? Maybe that is the case. It seems odd that someone taking college classes would be so uninformed, though.
  • mom2zachy122
    October 5, 2012 at 7:09 PM

    Hmmm..that's a pretty polar opinion.  There's a lot of science behind the assertion that a person is shaped by both genetics and encironment.  In fact, most of the arguments I hear are about HOW they combine or to what extent each contributes. 

    Wouldn't it be unlikely that genes exist only to pass on hair and eye color?  And we've seen how devastating the damage can be when a chromosome (gene) is missing or damaged.

    Hope she was able to at least see your point. :)

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