Being a friend to a parent of a child with special needs is not an easy task. The lives of a parent of a child with special needs are fairly chaotic, unpredictable, slightly self serving, and messy. I am a parent to a sweet little boy, and he is the biggest blessing we have ever experienced. He has several diseases that are life threatening, and he is developmentally delayed. Our lives are pretty busy most days, and he requires supervision constantly to keep him safe and alive. Over the past few years, my husband and I have had people come and go. I’ll admit we haven’t been the best at maintaining friendships. I know my limits and I know there are times in my life my sole focus has to be on my son. This doesn’t mean I don’t want friends, crave friends, but it definitely means our friendships aren’t what they use to be. If you can get through the difficulties of a friendship with our family, you will see the joy and experience the miracles every day of knowing our son.
I could go a couple different ways with what I’m about to say, I could give you the reasons why it’s hard to be my friend, or I could tell you the reasons why it’s worth it to be my friend. A gift I have is my gift to look at the good side of things, and today we are going to talk about the top 5 reasons being a friend with a Special Needs Mom is awesome.
We come with a ton of experience and knowledge
Most of us have spent a lot of time in doctor’s offices, hospitals, and therapy centers. Our kids have been through the ringer, and through that, we have become a wealth of knowledge and experience. Did you just get back from the clinic and have labs that need to be deciphered? We know more than you even realize and can often share what we know. I’ve helped more than a few friends remain calm and understand the labs of their children. Are you concerned about your child’s development or behavior? Most of us have been dealing with it for years, and we can share all the tips we have acquired from our therapists and doctors. We can also recommend when to seek therapy and what centers are the BEST in your area.
2. We are fantastic with Empathy
All of our time dealing with our own trauma, have made us excellent at understanding your pain. Even if your child isn’t dealing with things our children are, we can still relate because no matter what – it is hard to see your child struggle. I have found over the years that I feel good when I can lend an ear to another mom struggling. We all need someone to listen to our pain, and we have seen it all and can relate to any of your struggles.
3. We won’t be possessive of our time with you
Listen, our lives are freaking crazy. Most of us are lucky enough to find a minute to go to the bathroom by ourselves because our kids need a lot of supervision. We are are running from appointment to appointment, and most of our days are filled with dealing with all kinds of emergencies. Days, weeks and months sort of blur together for us, and we may seem to fall off the radar. It doesn’t mean we don’t want to see you, but we just are pulled in multiple directions. We will never demand time to see you, and we will appreciate the time we can spend with you even more.
4. We will value your friendship Immensely
If you are able to stick with us through our messy life, I can promise you we will value and respect you so much. We don’t have a lot of people that are willing to hang with us through our journey. When times are tough, we have seen a lot of people walk out on us. Some of us have lost our best friends in the world. If you are willing to stick with us in our messiness, we will give you all we have. We will love you more than you can even imagine. Financially we may not be able to spoil you with gifts, but we will be able to spoil you will love and adoration. It’s a special person that can be there for a family in chaos, and we will always appreciate your friendship.
5. You will Experience the Miracles of our Children
Many of our children are fighting battles daily that most of us will never experience. You will bear witness to the true miracle of life. You will see what it’s like to fight and beat the odds. When our children reach a new milestone, you will get to celebrate right along with us. Sure this sounds selfish, but until you experience the miracle of a child with special needs you will realize how unselfish this is. When you watch a child fight and reach their goals, life takes on a whole new meaning. You start to appreciate the little things, and you will realize it is love that truly matters. The heart you have will soften, and you will find yourself finding joy in the little things. Experiencing a fragile life, will teach you to enjoy the little moments, focus less on material, and understand that relationships are the foundation of life.
It will not be easy to stand beside us. We will challenge you with our rollercoasters of emotions, our inability to bite our tongues and our explosive tempers. However, we are grateful for all of the friends that stick with us, and we will cherish you to the end of eternity. It takes a special person to love our families, but we promise you will not be sorry for sticking with us. The hugs and kisses you will get from our kids will be worth the ride.