Molly Cranna for TIME
Relationships

Read This Mom’s Incredible Letter to Another Parent About Her Son With Down Syndrome

June 27, 2016

After he was left out of a class birthday party

After Jennifer Kiss-Engle’s son, Sawyer, was the only child in his class not invited to a birthday party, the British Columbia mom decided to take action. Kiss-Engle believed her son didn’t receive an invite because he has Down Syndrome.

“I am sorry that you are not informed, maybe scared, or uncertain about what it means to have Down Syndrome,” Kiss-Engle wrote in a public Facebook post to the parents. “I know if you knew more about Down Syndrome you wouldn’t have made this decision. I am not mad at you. Rather, I think this is an opportunity for you to get to know my son better.”

She went on to explain how she sees her son’s disability: “You see, having Down Syndrome doesn’t mean that you don’t want to have friends. It doesn’t mean that you don’t have feelings. It doesn’t mean you don’t like to go to birthday parties. People with Down Syndrome want the same things that you and I want. They want to have close relationships, they want to feel love, they want to contribute, they want to have meaningful lives, and they want to go to birthday parties. It may be more difficult at times to understand my child. But the laughter and love that you share doesn’t need interpretation.”

Follow Motto on Facebook.

Kiss-Engle’s post has been shared over 4,000 times, and she recently appended an update: “I want you to know that there is a happy ending to this story. The parent read my letter, spoke to their child about Sawyer, and the child created a special birthday invite for Sawyer. Of course he’s been beaming ever since and can’t stop talking about it.”

Read her full post below.