Tips for Adopting a Handicapped Child

Adopting a handicapped child may be the most important thing you ever do, but it comes with great challenges. The following tips can help you as you take this wonderful step.

Learn about the disability

The first step is to learn everything you can about the disability of the child. You want to be prepared. Of course no two handicapped children are exactly alike, but you can learn about the characteristics of the specific disability, and some of the things you may be facing.

Prepare your home for your child

You want your home to be ready for your new child. There are many wonderful products made for handicapped children, and these can make a huge difference in their quality of life. For instance if your child is in a wheelchair you may need to get some ramps so that he or she can get up the front steps. You may get a product like the Prairie View Industries SFW430 Portable Singlefold Ramp. If he or she can walk but with difficulty, you may want to install railings. They make special seats to assist for handicapped individuals using the bathroom. For the child’s room, you may want to get a chair that helps the child stand such as Med-Lift 5053 Power Electric Recliner Med-Lift Lift Chair. You can ask your physician or do your own research to find out about these products for the particular handicap your child has.

Help your child fit in with other children

If you have other kids, then you will want the child to fit in. Explain to your children about the new child and the handicap he or she faces. Try to have them do things together such as play a board game. You can also read books to your children about handicapped kids or let them see movies with a child with that handicap. How exactly you deal with this will depend on their age, of course.

Bring normalcy to your child

Many handicapped children just want to be normal, whatever that is. Bring this to your child. Try to do the things that children without disabilities do. For instance, there are some playgrounds that are specifically made for handicapped children.

Show your child love

What your adopted child may want more than anything from you is love and acceptance. Now that you have opened your home to your child it is time to open your heart. Do not look at what is wrong with your child but at all of the wonderful things that are so right.

Look for community resources

You are not alone. Other parents are facing the same thing, and there is a lot of support out there if you look for it. First there are many organizations that offer services for handicapped individuals. Some provide social opportunities such as the Special Olympics. You may be able to find support groups. You may just be able to connect with other parents of handicapped children. Of course make arrangements for his or her schooling, if applicable. This can be beneficial for both you and your child.

Be kind to yourself

Adopting a handicapped child is not an easy task. It will be filled with challenges, but the rewards are likely to be greater. Do the best that you can, but do not berate yourself for not being able to do more. Remember that it should get easier as time goes on.

It is a kind soul who adopts a handicapped child. Do as much as you can to help the child with this transition. The above tips can make this process easier.