Confessions Of parent About children with Special Needs : The Hard Things

Parenting a child with Special Needs can be a challenge, and often those challenges feel like a strong tidal wave coming at us, threatening to make us lose our balance, to fall, to give up. But we don’t. We never do.We face challenges. There are hard things about parenting children with special needs.

Social isolation:

  • We don’t want to be isolated, yet sometimes because of our children’s needs we find ourselves alone. We want friends. We need friends.

We feel like we are not doing enough:

  •  Deep down we often wonder, could I do more? Could I try harder?  Am I really doing all I can do? Sometimes, we have an overwhelming feeling of failing at everything we do because we don’t have enough time or energy to do it all. We feel like we are failing with our kids, failing at our marriage, failing at keeping a neat home, failing at our jobs.


  • At times, we feel like we are cheating our typical children from having a normal childhood experiences. We feel torn, and we fear that our typical children will feel less important or forgotten.

Comparing our special needs child to typical peers:

  • We try not to compare, but sometimes it’s hard not to notice how different our special needs children are to their typical peers.

Lack of communication:

  • It is hard when you cannot understand your child because of a speech delay,  it can be frustrating when you cannot have a conversation with your own child. The lack of communication also affects other social interactions and the forming of friendships. It is especially hard when your child is non-verbal.


  • It is tiresome when other people throw judgment at us.
  • It is insulting when people hint they could do better and that our children’s behaviors are a result of poor parenting.
  • The constant battle with schools, doctors, insurance companies, etc, is exhausting.
  • Some people don’t even give our kids a chance.

The future:

  • We worry about the unknown, what the future holds. What will happen to our kids when we are not around? And how do we let go?

Dealing with the diagnosis:

  • When we fist received our child’s diagnosis, we had to grieve the loss of the child we thought we would have. Once we deal with the diagnosis, we still have to deal with the everyday realities of our children’s’ needs.