What do I do after that?
Having a disabled child or loved one can be physically and emotionally challenging for parents and caregivers, and some may even feel guilty. As such, it is important that you are proactive about finding people who can offer you help or support.
Apart from medical professionals, a support group can be a valuable resource to tap on. You might be surprised how much it helps to have people who are going through the same thing as you, and they might share with you some tips and tricks that make life much easier to navigate.
Ensure that you address your own needs as well. Talk to your doctor about how you are feeling ever since discovering that your child or loved one has a disability. You might be suffering from anxiety or depression, which can severely affect your emotions and moods, in turn impacting your relationships. Working with a trained professional can help you cope with your situation and maintain the strong bond with your child or loved one.
Make a concerted effort to put aside time to do something fun together with your child or loved one. Think about what is suitable, and avoid any activity that could cause tension. Remember to have your loved one or child take any necessary food and medication, and spend the day doing something pleasurable for the both of you. This helps to re-establish the bond between you.
Keep a notebook to jot down your achievements – baby steps which could range from trying a new activity or cooking to even the simplest things on harder days, such as getting dressed and getting out of bed. Whenever you are feeling drained or disheartened, look at the book and feel proud of how far you have come.