Tips on Raising a Child with Challenges

Like any other form of parenting, raising a child with special needs or a disability doesn’t come with a ‘how-to’ manual and is a feat no parent is ever fully prepared to tackle. The parenting adventure may include worrying visits to the doctor, complex play dates, and an exhausting, continuous watch.

Are you feeling overwhelmed and drained? You might consider the following…………………

Understand your child’s condition

Having complete knowledge of your child’s condition will help you better understand what they need from you. You may research on the internet, read journals and publications, talk to parents who have raised a child with similar conditions, and always consult with your doctor. Fully grasping the condition will enable you to anticipate challenges and assess how to create structure and support in their lives. For instance, if your child has a hearing impairment, getting the smallest hearing aid on the market might help them with voice recognition and speech development.

Join a support group

It takes a village to raise a child. A support group can be a good place to let go of frustrations by sharing your experiences with parents who face similar challenges. Additionally, a support group can potentially offer more than what your spouse and relatives may be able to. You can learn new ways of handling your child by hearing what methods have worked for others. The reassurance that you are not alone might be all you need to help validate your feelings.

Encourage socialization

Your child’s challenges may impact several aspects of their natural development, whether it leads to physical limitations or socializing. For example, when parenting a child with special needs, you might want to take the lead in terms of setting up playdates. They might lack the confidence or comfort level to actively pursue friendships. Building socializing skills enables them to interact to the best of their ability both in a school setting and later stages of life.

Build independence

According to experts, teaching disabled kids to be independent in early life will determine if they will be independent later. Independence translates to self-confidence and higher self esteem, which they need when socializing. As a parent, you can enrich your child’s environment with tools that foster independence. Additionally, you can create a simple, easy-to-follow routine for their daily activities. If it helps, enlist the support of a parenting coach who specializes in working with families navigating special needs and/or physical challenges.

Seek out academic support

Apart from severe mental impairment, most disabilities rarely affect the child’s ability to learn. A child with special needs will require extra support on the academic level, and you want to advocate for them as much as possible, and teach them a they grow to learn to advocate for themselves. Special education in the early days can give them the foundation to deal with a school system’s challenges, and to get special services and allowances that can help them succeed.

Find a trusting, patient doctor

Find a doctor who truly understands special needs and one who will give you time, especially when you are initially navigating your child’s challenges.  And, if medication is involved for their condition, you will need to establish a routine timetable to track your child’s health needs with their physician.  You want to find a medical practitioner who ideally feels both supportive and knowledgeable, and if they are patient, that is a bonus.  Especially when your child if first diagnosed, it can potentially feel like a time of overwhelm.


In conclusion, know that you are not alone.  Many families walk the path of dealing with challenges and/or special needs.  You will find your support tribe, and your child will have an opportunity to reach their best possible potential, knowing that you have their back.  And, that you are not afraid to reach out to those who know more than you.  It is a sign of strength to call on seasoned, trained experts who can point you in the right direction.


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