Motherhood and Children with Special Needs


Having a child with special challenges is an exceptionally demanding aspect of Motherhood.  In addition to figuring out, constantly, how to find resources for the child’s needs, we must access a different kind of love.  As this child’s journey unfolds, we are also the only person between this child and the outside world. Our advocacy, and the load of responsibility and worry this generates on a regular basis, is rarely understood or supported.

While this is true for all mothers, it is especially demanding for a mother whose child has special challenges. As this child grows older, these circumstances pull on the family dynamic, demand monitoring care, while also requiring that a mother negotiate with the outside world in a very particular way that isolates her from the community around her.

I believe that the best way forward in these special circumstances is to acknowledge the complexity of the situation we are in, and to include compassion for the child as well as the family as a goal. Our own emotions and needs will change, and so will we.

As such a mother myself, I also know that these are tremendous growth opportunities. Mothers with such opportunities have a gateway into the vulnerability and resiliency of humankind in an exceptional way.  This can become the beginning of a deep meditative compassion that transcends the personal in truly spiritual ways.