Monday Jenni “JWOWW” Farley posted a YouTube update about her two-year-old Greyson Valor, who is currently developmentally delayed with speech and undergoing therapy. In the video Jenni talks about how she used to regularly share “Greyson updates” on her channel but stopped once it became clear he wasn’t reaching developmental milestones at the expected rate. She gave no diagnoses of Greyson, but he might be too young for doctors to label what’s happening with him. The main purpose of her video was to connect with other families of children with developmental delays or who are on the autism spectrum, fight stigma, and spread information.
Fans first found out about Greyson’s struggles on a recent episode of Jersey Shore. “Everyone wants to think having kids is rainbows and f**king unicorns, but it’s not,” she said. “My bubbe Greyson turned 2, and he still isn’t speaking, and he has therapy three days a week.” This revelation came as part of an explanation about why she was so hurt with the other cast members. Her husband Roger Matthews had asked the group to record a special Mother’s Day message for Jenni because she was feeling down but only Mike “The Situation” Sorrentino recorded a message for her.
The outpouring of support and people writing Jenni about their similar situations was huge so Jenni posted a long Instagram message thanking everyone and explaining further.
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To everyone that tuned into @jerseyshore last night and messaged, commented etc about @greysonmathews with similar stories or just showing love I cant thank you enough. As a mother, I will go to the moon and back for my kids… no question. I live my life differently because of them. To find out Greyson is “behind” or “delayed” crushed me… but only for a moment… that moment came from wanting to have “perfect children” and “how could this happen to me?”… but Grey is PERFECT and it CAN happen to anyone.. I saw that last night when the messages came in by the hundreds. I decided to share that side of my family on Jersey Shore because I want to help anyone going through what I’m going through… I’m sure people need support the way I’ve needed it. Greyson is still in therapy 3x a week… he’s doing a lot better. We also changed his diet and removed unnecessary preservatives. I’ve had almost every test done you can think of because I’ll never accept that this is best case for Grey… I’ll always think outside the box and do anything that will try and help him achieve nothing short of greatness… I don’t sleep much lol. He’s my world and I want to give him the best life… because he deserves it ?? and to my son @greysonmathews.. if you ever see this in the future… you’re mommy might be a bit crazy, loud and dramatic but when it comes to you and your sister… I will fight for you two until my last breath… and continue to fight for you after death… your mommy will hold your hand and stand by your side for eternity ??
“To everyone that tuned in last night to Jersey Shore and messaged, commented etc . . .with similar stories or just showing love I can’t thank you enough,” she wrote. “As a mother, I will go to the moon and back for my kids… no question. I live my life differently because of them.”
“To find out Greyson is ‘behind’ or ‘delayed’ crushed me… but only for a moment… that moment came from wanting to have ‘perfect children’ and ‘how could this happen to me?’” she elaborated. “… but Grey is PERFECT and it CAN happen to anyone.. I saw that last night when the messages came in by the hundreds.”
“I think sharing stories and educating each other is one of the best ways to break a stigma. I think there’s a stigma when it comes to your child hitting developmental parts on the chart that they’re supposed to hit and if they don’t then they’re this or they’re that or they’re anything in between,” she says in the video. “And at the end of the day, just like you, myself and every other parent, we just want the best for our kids.”
“I wanna tell other parents that it’s hard as hell . . I don’t sleep at night because I’m Googling like a maniac,” she explains. “Everything and anything that’s gonna help Grayson and I’m gonna turn my YouTube channel into that . . .I don’t want it to be on the Jersey Shore for two minutes and then done. I want to keep information going. I want to keep conversation going.”
Along with her YouTube channel, Jenni plans to turn JenniFarley.com and Jwoww.com into informational sites. Furthermore she implores her viewers to email their stories and questions to email@example.com.
Jwoww and husband Roger Matthews’s 4-year-old daughter Meilani started preschool last week.
Amelia Cunningham is a Starcasm writer and editor