7 Truths about Adoptive Parenting Special Needs Children

  1. You may struggle to find adequate support because people will think, “You chose to adopt your child, knowing he had special needs.” The flip side is that you may have a difficult time asking for help and support for the very same reasons. 
  2. Your child’s special needs may be compounded because he suffered neglect, abuse and/or was exposed to illegal substances prior to birth. All of these things affect your child mentally, physically, and emotionally, which may make finding the correct treatment that much more difficult.
  3. If there are other children in the home, they may struggle with the fact that you chose to bring a child requiring so much care into your family. They may feel their sibling takes more than his share of your time and energy. This may also have the opposite effect, and the other children in the family may use this experience to become more empathetic and gain skills that they would not have had access to if their disabled sibling wasn’t in the family.
  4. Your family may need therapy to work through the difficulties of having a family member with special needs brings. There may be fear, bitterness, envy, or a host of other emotions that require a professionals input.
  5. Your adopted child may need specialized therapy to help him if he struggles with feeling guilty for requiring so much of his parents’ time and energy.
  6. Not having a complete family medical history can delay or complicate treatment.
  7. There will be people who will commend you for adopting a complex child. They will say you are a Saint for willingly committing to care for such a needy child, but you will smile to yourself because you know something they can never understand…you are blessed. Parenting a child with special needs is hard, it is time consuming, and there are days you want to give up, but the more time you spend with someone the deeper your bond and the richer the relationship.