Are Parents of Special Needs Kids Always More Special?
If you have a child with special needs, you might find that people treat you differently. Many people admire parents of children with special needs, as though it takes an extra effort on their part to maintain family wellness. However, for Eliana Tardio, the proud mother of Emir and Ayelen, both with Down syndrome, having a child with special needs doesn’t make a parent any more special.
Eliana notes, ‘Usually people introduce me by saying things like: “she’s a very special mom,” or “this woman is outstanding for the work she’s doing with her kids and her community,” but honestly, I don’t deserve to be thought of as more special for loving my own kids, that’s what every good parent does!’ She explains that love doesn’t see differences; the challenge for parents with special needs children is to learn to see positive stuff where others would only see challenges.
‘Yes, we get challenged in many ways, and if you look at it from the outside, you may be deceived, seeing some sort of superhero fighting for the rights of their kids,’ she says. ‘In reality, the only thing happening, is a regular parent doing his best to learn and cope with a life that was never part of the plan.’ Eliana comments that parents of typical kids can be just as special, adding, ‘The diagnosis of a child doesn’t make anyone more special, but the individual determination to learn from any experience that we must face during our lives is what sets us apart.’
If you’re a parents of children with special needs, you have to spend more time specifically looking out for their wellbeing, as your kids will need extra care and services. When your children’s conditions are severe, you may even have to dedicate your life to them. Eliana notes, ‘It turns out though, it’s not so different when you have a typical child. You may decide on your own accord to give him more or less attention as he doesn’t need you as much as a child with special needs, but when you decide to give that child unconditional love and the best side of you every day, you are also a special parent.’
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