This website signposts to emotional support for parents and carers of children with special needs.  Many parents of disabled children or children with special needs face additional associated challenges in practical, physical and emotional terms. Sometimes when life doesn't follow an expected, mainstream, non-disabled path it can make you feel isolated and like you're the only one going through certain emotions and experiences. 

The aim of these pages is to provide a virtual home for parents and carers to realise you are not alone. There are many other families also going through similar experiences and feeling similar complex emotions.  Some of the thoughts and experiences of other families are included under words of wisdom

Survey - please share your views

To complete the survey on the emotional impact of parenting a disabled child and share your recommendations and experiences with other parents, please click here. Thank you to everyone who has completed the survey, it is very moving that you are willing to share this with others in a similar situation.

There is information on relevant UK organisations and private practitioners (counsellors, psychotherapists and psychologists) who can provide further emotional support if necessary.  

This website is managed by Joanna Griffin, Chartered Counselling Psychologist and mother to a disabled son.
I provide clinical supervision to other counsellors, therapists and psychologists. Further details here. 
'It's trite but true: be kind to yourself. It's not your fault if you struggle (and it's not your child's fault either). Some people will really come through for you, and some will let you down. Keep the good ones close. Make sure there are other things in your life which nourish you, to keep you going through the hard times. Your child is wonderful; the rest of the world sometimes cannot see that, and so much the worse for it.' - Dad, Son, 10 years old, ASD
I have gained many useful skills that will eventually transfer to work or self-employment. It has opened my eyes to a world that is normally hidden and makes me more determined to fight. I have also, eventually, learnt to enjoy being a mum. Take it one step at a time. And breathe. – Mum, 8, girl, hemiplegia and cerebral visual impairment  
'Love your child for who they are and who they will become, do not fret over what might have been it is your child's happiness and your love of them that will see you through the dark times and there will be plenty of them but even the smallest thing can alter a bad day from a hug that had never come before to a smile or a laugh at only something the two of you can understand' – Mum, 22 male Autism high functioning
Cerebra Stress helpline
0800 043 9385
Scope Face to face befriending
0844 800 9189
Contact a Family
0808 808 3555

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