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Tips for parents caring for a child with a disability

Caring for a child with a disability can be difficult. They are your main priority and you want to ensure they have the best possible quality of life. It’s important for children with disabilities to get the same opportunities as other children and not feel left out. 

However, this often means that parents put a lot of pressure on themselves. All good parents put their children’s needs before their own – but when your child has a disability this can be pushed to the next level. You find yourself exhausted, emotional and in need of a break. Here are some tips for parents caring for a child with a disability. 

Financial aid

When a child has a disability, they often need additional support and equipment. For example, you may need to adjust your home so they can move around more easily. This can be expensive. Financial worries can create significant stress. However, if you’re struggling, there are plenty of ways to get financial aid. If your child’s disability has developed due to the negligence of a healthcare provider, for example, you might be entitled to certain benefits (see a Georgia Cerebral Palsy lawyer for more information). 

There are also plenty of charities that may be able to offer financial support especially if your child needs a trip to Urgent Care.

 

Self care

Parents of children with disabilities can often overlook their own self-care. You become burnt out and over-stressed. It’s important to take care of your own wellbeing when raising a child with a disability. How can you care for them if you aren’t caring for yourself? This means taking time out and making sure you get time to relax and recuperate. You know what you need to do to relax. It might be having a long bubble bath, taking a relaxing mini-break or simply going for a stroll.    

Finding a support group

It’s important to make sure that you aren’t doing everything alone. Even the strongest, most emotionally stable people need to ask for help every now and then. While you might have family and friends to lean on, it can be hugely beneficial to talk to parents in the same situation as you. So, why not find a support group in your area? Here, you can discuss any worries, stresses or incidents during the week and ask for advice and guidance. You might find that you connect with some other parents and make lifelong friends.

Letting go

All parents struggle to let go of their children. You worry about them all the time. However, when you have a child with a disability, it can be even more challenging. Will they be OK at school or at their friend’s house? However, an important part of looking after a child with a disability is to let them be just that – a child. That means caring for them but not being too controlling. As they grow up, they will need to learn to be independent.   

9 Comments

  • Kate Sarsfield

    Get help from the very beginning. This is a parnership between the parents, extended family, agencies and of course other children, if there are any.

  • Tamra Phelps

    I definitely hope parents caring for disabled kids also look after their own emotional health. After all, it does the child no good if the parent gets burned out.

  • Amber

    I think many parents forget the self care element – we all need to be kind to ourselves more. I hope you have a great weekend ahead!

  • Thomas Gibson

    I commend any parent that is taking care of a child with special needs. Raising children without special needs is chllenging enough.

  • Rosie

    I’ve learned from working with the public that there are often divorces in families with a child with disabilities, and sometimes more than one child. It can put a strain on the marriage, and it doesn’t mean that one of them can trust they will be able to lean on the other. Also, it can be just as hard if there is an adult ‘child’ with disabilities, there are many challenges to care for an adult, esp if they are allowed to drive and have some mobility. The hardest thing of all, I’ve read many articles about, is there is so little openings for homes for adults with disabilities, when the parent(s) become elderly, they cannot ensure their disabled adult can be safely transferred to a living situation.

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