Most of us have heard the expression walk in my shoes to see what it’s like (fill in the blank). Have you ever been so frustrated you want to curl up in a ball and cry? Do you know someone who has a special needs child or a child with developmental delays?
Life with a child who has needs beyond the average person can take a toll on parent(s). Unfortunately some parents do not have a support system in place or they may have one that is mediocre.
So trying to take some time to themselves to refresh or re cooperate can be the greatest challenge, especially when it comes to child care. Actually, it is one of my greatest frustrations, disappointments, discouragements and it has been for at least the last 10 years.
People enjoy watching my now teenage daughter. Most of the time I hear about how wonderful and sweet she is when someone has been watching her. But when it comes to my oldest son Caleb, things are dramatically different. Most people don’t want to watch him. In fact, I’ve had people admit that they cannot “handle” him.
It is a struggle to find decent, reliable child care especially when people believe they cannot handle or deal with a child who is mildly different from the average child. Most days he is just a more curious, inquisitive child that will ask questions quite often.
This also leads to the problem of employment for me. If I do not have reliable child care then what good does it do for me to go out and seek employment?
I cannot imagine what other single parent families go through with a special needs child. I would hope they would have a great support system which is a challenge for many including myself. There is a true need for people to reach out to families who at times are overwhelmed, stressed and would like to have even a day to recuperate. It is a challenge to find respite care for caregivers who primarily focus on the needs of the special needs child and tend to forget about themselves.
Most of us have seen stories in the news where someone snaps and does something unimaginable. People cannot imagine what it is like for someone who is overwhelmed day in and day out with no outlet. Life with an autistic child is not an easy one. Every day there are challenges some more stressful than others. Despite the fact that many of these challenges are life lessons it often feels like the world is against them.