A Melbourne mother is trying to raise awareness about “non-visible disabilities” after her son was labelled a bully at school.
Sonia Buckley shared an emotional video to Facebook this month where she explains that her son Billy, who is in Year 7, has Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and Oppositional Defiant Disorder that greatly hinder his social interactions at school.
The 13-year-old’s ability to understand spoken language is at one per cent many of his classmates’ and his overall language ability is at two per cent, Ms Buckley explains.
“People think Billy is a bully. The best way I can explain it is Billy doesn't understand the world and the world doesn't understand Billy,” she says.
“Billy interprets everything very differently to how most people would… Unfortunately, kids know they will get a reaction out of Billy and deliberately provoke him.”
Saddened by the fact her son doesn’t have many friends and regularly returns home from school in tears, Ms Buckley implores parents to teach their children that everyone is different and has different needs.
Her video, which sees Billy sit by her side as she reads out an open letter, has been viewed 91,000 times on Facebook and shared almost 2,000 times.
Responses have been varied however, with some users supporting and praising her while others speak out about bullying.