A,B,C’s of Living with a Child with “Invisible Special Needs”
by Sue Badeau
A - Advocacy
Learn to be your own best advocate
Behavior management skills help both you and your child
C - Creativity
Stretch your mind, look at situations from new angles
Drug and alcohol issues may be prevalent
E - Early Intervention
Don’t wait for problems to become too hot to handle
F - Family system approach
Avoid the ‘IP’ model of intervention
G - Grief and loss
Develop an understanding for their impact
H - Humor
Don’t lose yours (and work on building it up if its weak!)
Identify positive qualities in your child, and build on these
J - Just do it!
You won’t know for sure if something does or doesn’t work until you try!
Know your (and your child’s) rights! Be assertive!
L - Learn
New ways, new ideas, new approaches, for yourself and your child
Marriage and/or other key relationships - don’t neglect them
Never give up
Other Parents are often your best sources of support
P - Partnership
Develop a “peer/partnership” approach to service providers
Q - Questions
There are no dumb ones - keep asking until you get what you need
R - Resources
Don’t be afraid to seek and use
Schools can be a constant source of stress, work hard to develop an educational team
T - Therapist
find a good one and develop a trust-based relationship
U - Unknown
this will be one of the top 10 words in your life - get comfortable with it!
V - Vacations
Family time together, away from everyday stresses is valuable
W - Weekends
, and their lack of structure can be problematic, try to establish routines
X - X-tra curricular activities
Find a hobby, sport, or skill your child enjoys and encourage!
Y - Yourself
Take care of yourself or you have nothing left to give!
Z - Zen
Develop your inner self, spiritual resources, connect with a community of faith