As parents we want the most for our children. There aren’t many of us that think “Eh, they’ll figure it out!” In fact, for most of us, our worlds revolve around guiding them through life. The problem is that we are constantly battling social media, electronics, friends, school systems, and simply difference of opinions on what is the best way to get our kids from birth to successful adult. If you are anything like me, you have experienced a head spinning moment at least 100 times in your child’s life where you felt you might just lose your mind with the multiple ways you are being pulled.
Let me help 😀
PUMP THE BRAKES! Stop listening to everyone else, just long enough to figure out what is best for you as a parent and your child. As a mother of three boys with special needs, I know how easy it is to get overwhelmed by the numerous amounts of answers everyone else has for your personal situation. The only true specialist your child has is you! Over time I will share outlets, thoughts, laughter, truth, and comfort. Always find confidence in the fact that you are your child’s greatest cheerleader in life. You spend every day nurturing them, loving them, and teaching them. Do not let a persons status or title intimidate you on how to handle YOUR child.
You know your child better than anyone else in this world.
BE OPEN MINDED: If you are going to put your child on a pedestal that no one can reach (not even you) then you are making assistance unattainable. You are only hurting yourself and your child. It’s important to remember that while this is your “perfect little angel”, this child is still a flawed human. Accept that your child will make mistakes along the way. Teach them to take ownership of their mistakes or eventually you will have an entitled adult with their hand out wondering why the world isn’t ready and willing to just give.
BE STRONG: Nothing in your life will test your strength more than your special needs child. You will fight schools, officials, and doctors. You will be tempted to degrade these people in front of your child. I implore you to rethink that strategy. By disrespecting the people in charge of your child when you’re not around, you are opening the door for your child to do the same. Special Needs children already have a target on their back. Try not to make that target larger with bad attitude and lack of compromise.
RESEARCH: This is your number one job above all others! The biggest problem you will or have already found is that professionals tend to generalize your child. Take notes of their daily activities. Start a diary and when I say research, I mean earn a PhD in your child’s needs. Professionals in doctors offices and at schools are dealing with 100’s even 1000’s of other children. In order for them to personalize your child’s treatment it is up to you to educate THEM on your child.
BE VIGILANT: Despite your weariness or exhaustion you can never give up on your fight for your child’s best treatment. You will here no, you will be told you are being dramatic and in some cases professionals will get down right rude with you for simply trying to understand your child’s needs. Whatever happens, don’t let their reluctant or passive attitudes discourage you. You must always push forward for your child.
ALWAYS TAKE THE HIGH ROAD: You will be tempted to raise your voice, yell, maybe even use fowl language. All this does is slow down the process and makes you look like the problem. You must stay composed. You may even want to cry at times (God knows I have shed an ocean) but as much as possible you have to keep it together. Not always, but every now and then you will run into that ONE person who will make this the most difficult experience you’ve ever had! Combat them with your own knowledge and kill them with kindness. Being firm is okay however, being rude is never acceptable. Understand that everyone you speak with has their own understanding of the situation. Your job is to ensure they are putting your child’s needs first. Not to prove you’re right and they’re wrong.
STAY TUNED: I’m going to try to make this my pet project and post more information on this subject. My kids are 6, 13, and 17. So I have battled schools and doctors for 17 years. For 6 years I have had to do it on three different levels with three different facilities. It has been far from easy, but I believe in my children’s future! Therefore easy is not the problem in my eyes. My biggest challenge is convincing them that my child is the only child they need to think about when we are in the room together.