As a parent of a child with special needs, it can be hard to cope with the idea that your child may be treated differently and have a harder time doing simple daily tasks. It can be upsetting to watch your child struggling with learning and making friends. However, 79% of Americans say that children learn how to do things in different ways from other children.
Even though there is a growing understanding that many kids learn differently, even if some of them don’t struggle with a learning disorder, it can still be hard for parents to parent a child with a special needs. However, there are some ways to do so.
You first need to be aware of and understanding of your child’s learning disability. Though this may not be easy, it is necessary. This may mean getting a diagnosis from a medical professional and reading everything you can about their struggles. There’s a chance that you may not have any past experience with a child with a special need, so this is as much of a learning process for you as it as for them.
In order to fully understand what is going on, you need to be able to immerse yourself in your child’s disability. Talk with someone at your child’s special education center or someone who works with your child specifically in a special education program. Many public and private schools will have special education centers that focus on helping special needs students. The people in the special education centers will be able to teach you everything you need to know about your child’s disability, but they can also give you unique insight into your son or daughter’s daily struggles. Once you start to learn and understand, you will be able to relate to your child in a way you’ve never been able to before.
It’s also extremely important to be supportive, no matter what struggles your child may be dealing with. They need someone on their side to make them feel as if these struggles are just temporary and that they can get through anything they need to.
Don’t forget to take time for yourself! If you don’t take time for yourself for self-care, you won’t be able to properly take care of another person. While your child is spending the day at their school for special needs, it gives you the chance to take a break. Go to lunch. Take a nap. Do something you wouldn’t normally be able to do while they’re in your care.
Doing all of these things listed above will help you cope with the fact that your child has a special need. There is nothing wrong with your child having a learning disability or any other type of need. With patience, education, and compassion, your family can cope with anything.