|Original Photo by Geralt on Pixabay with Alterations by Author|
As another year ends, talk of New Year’s resolutions abounds. Resolutions are an opportunity for parents to prioritize their goals for the coming year. If you have a child with special needs, these resolutions may help you and your family.
1. Teach your children life skills
As parents of children with special needs, we focus a lot of our time on getting our children the educational school supports they need and deserve. As our children grow, we need to expand this focus and prepare our children for their lives as adults. Handling money, paying bills, grocery shopping and searching for jobs are skills all children need. Resolve to teach your children life skills in 2015. Education.com and WatchKnowLearn.org are good resources on life skills and how to teach them.
2. Increase your children’s independence
|Quinn Dombroski on Flickr|
As our children grow, it is important to decrease their dependence on us and school staff. Encourage your children to do more tasks without your help. Give or increase your children’s chores at home to foster their independence in 2015. More information on fostering children’s independence is available from Everyday Life, PBS Parents and Autism Aspergers Digest.
3. Take care of you
Happy and healthy parents are better prepared to help their children and handle problems when they arise. In 2015, make sure all your health, dental and vision checks are up to date. Resolve to improve your lifestyle in 2015 by including exercise and a healthy diet. The Mayo Clinic and CDC provide information about living a healthy lifestyle.
4. Schedule special time with siblings
|Moodboard on Flickr|
Children with special needs require a lot of time and attention from their parents and that can frustrate other siblings. Set aside time to spend with your children without special needs. Playing a board game, going for an ice cream or even just talking with your other children lets them know they are just as important to you.
5. Become a better advocate for your child
|Jose Kevo on Flickr|
Parents of children with special needs face many battles as they try to ensure their children get the supports they need. In these battles, we are advocating for our children. Advocacy is a skill that we can improve with some work. To be a good advocate for your children you need to
- Understand their needs
- Know their entitlements
- Learn about advocacy skills
For more information on advocacy see:
Interested in more New Year’s Resolutions for special needs parents? Check out:
This post was originally published by me on Examiner.com.