Loving Relationships

Happy Valentine’s Day! Love means many different things to different people. CDSS Awareness Leader Paul Sawka explores some of the loving relationships in his own life, including his family, his girlfriend Kelsey, and his hope to one day have children.

Family Love 

Valentine’s is about being in love with my family. I have been in love ever since my own birth in 1986 and we have been together for the past 38 years. My family is well-loved because they have a loving, grown-up son. I love them so very much in my heart.

I really have grown up a lot over the years with my family and also with my loving sister because she is a very special gift to me. For my sister’s birthday, my family has a big birthday cake, a big birthday card for her, a balloon, and a special before-dinner drink. My parents and my sister will have wine and as for me, I have a glass of milk with our dinner.

The love that we have has always been with our family. We do love our grandparents. They are gone from us now, but we can always remember them in our loving hearts. And the same for all of our very good neighbours and our good friends.

Romantic Relationships

Kelsey and I get along with each other really well and have lots of common interests. We spend lots of time together, like going out to a movie and dinner. We do like swimming together as well, and sometimes we do our own thing. I like going on a date where we can talk about our lives, and I happen to know that Kelsey likes to have her nails done by herself. She is very good!

We have been planning and talking about our engagement. It is of great importance to really get along with each other, to really share things together, and not break up at all. Sharing household chores, having very good communication, and having small and big goals together are important to us. 

My big goal is to have enough money for a townhouse with my roommate and my girlfriend to live in and to have two babies. I can be a very good father to my small son and Kelsey can have a child to love and really take care of and be a part of the family. I will offer education to my child so that they can follow in my footsteps and grow up just like me.

What Does Love Mean to You?

Many still believe that people with Down syndrome don’t date, have romantic relationships, or get married. The truth is that people with Down syndrome experience all different kinds of love. We got to share a few loving relationships through our Love Means photo essay.