Most expectant parents do not plan to have a child with special needs. The news that a child has a developmental disability or delay can be devastating for parents and caregivers, and can wipe away a parent’s hopes and dreams in a matter of minutes. Once the information begins to sink in, parents experience a range of emotions such as anger, fear and guilt. They might feel isolated from other relatives and friends whose children are typically developing. They wonder where to turn for guidance, support and information.
Even after children are placed in high-quality, educational programs, parents still feel isolated and afraid. They worry about who will protect their child, whether their youngster will ever be able to take care of him or herself, and the impact of having a child with special needs might have on their other children.