Kindred Hearts: Raising Special Needs Children

Do you have a child with special needs?  If so, we’re walking a similar path.  Your child may or may not have the same special needs as my son.  I invite you to read my profile to find out what special needs my son has.  But I imagine you have to work harder at parenting than parents who don’t have a child with special needs. That assumption is based on the comments I heard from fellow parents of special needs children when I led a parent support group, when I was an administrator in a Christian school, when I was a second grade teacher, and when I was a special ed. teacher.  Let’s begin to get to know one another.

 If you feel led, let us know about your child with special needs.  How would you finish this sentence?

 Being a parent of a special needs child…

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5 responses

15 09 2011
Vicki Chandler

Being a parent of a special needs child is not what I would have planned, but am grateful for the countless times I experienced the Lord’s faithfulness. The experiences have enriched my teaching. I was able to empathize with parents of students who were struggling in any way. I’m able to share lessons not taught in a textbook with the college students I teach. When I was diagnosed with MS, being a parent of a special needs adult son meant more. It helped me have insight into the challenges Chris faced. The only regret I have is that I wasn’t able to spend as much time with our other son, Rob, when he was growing up. Attending to the pressing matters with Chris never diminish the love I have for Rob.

11 01 2012
Meredith

Vicki, you must’ve been sent to me today! I have a son with many special needs and we have really been having a rough time lately. Today, I posted about the problems that we’ve been having with his medication. I’d love to hear about anything you would like to share with me!

12 01 2012
Vicki

Hi Meredith,
I posted a reply to this discussion on your blog. Basically, I said I completely understand about medication issues. We experienced times when Chris had to change his medication. Those were stressful times. They also provided opportunities to learn. We learned that sometimes all it takes is a minor adjustment to medication – such as supplementing the current meds. with a small dose of something, tweaking the dosage, or changing the time of day specific medication is administered. We also learned that specific dietary habits can profoundly affect mood and behavior – not the typically thought of sugar, but rather caffiene, dyes, and carbohydrates.
Chris is now 31 yrs. old. The Lord faithfully protected my sanity throughout all the turbulent times.
“The peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:7

17 01 2012
sarah

Hi Vicki. I just wrote “The Wonderful World of Autism. ” It tells about the struggles and triumphs that my kids and I upon learning two of their siblings have autism. Though I also have a daughter who has learning disabilities, all the experiences that my immediate family and my kids had gone through are basically the same.

Feel free to leave comments .I would love to hear from you.

17 01 2012
Vicki

Hi Sarah,
I completely understand living in a home where several people have disabilities. Although I have MS and my son has mental illness, many of our experiences have been similar (specialists and medical tests, disability interfering with what we want to do at times, keeping as fit as possible to minimize symptoms, cognition problems at times, and the list goes on).
Years ago, I started a support group at our church for parents of children with special needs. We often discovered that most of us had similar experiences regardless of the disabilities represented.
Bottom line…life can be truly challenging and yes there are triumphs – huge triumphs. God is always so faithful!

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