This poem is written for and dedicated
to all those persons who are mentally handicapped 
through no cause of their own
and are placed in institutions to live. 
They deserve to live a life of dignity and self-respect.
"Although I May Be Different"
Although I may be different
I want to be treated like you
There are just certain deeds
Which I am not able to do.
Be conscious of what you say
When I am in your midst.
Please don't talk in front of me
As though I don't exist.

Please don't make fun of me
As I have feelings too.
Although I may be different
I want to be treated like you.
Although I may not speak
The words you say I can hear.
I may comprehend all you say
Though I cannot make it clear.
Although I may not hear
My eyes can read your face
So let the expressions that I see
Be an emotion I can embrace.
Remember when I behave poorly
That you have bad days too
Although I express it differently
Certain things upset me too.
I will try most anything you ask
If I have the ability to do
So use kindness and respect
You'll be surprised at what I can do.
Reprimand me when I am bad
When I'm good - don't forget to praise.
Show me patience and understanding
And what I can do will sometimes amaze.
Although I may not speak
Although I may not hear
I still possess a heart with feelings
And eyes that cry real tears.
Written 1992 by Carol Barton
2007 ~ Carol Barton
Used with permission
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