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The emotional weight of having a child with disabilities

The experience of having a child with disabilities can be overwhelming for any parent, but the emotional weight can be particularly heavy for mothers. Society often places a great deal of pressure on mothers to be perfect caregivers, and when a mother has a child with disabilities — especially ones that are invisible — she may feel a deep sense of shame.

The heaviness of the emotions around this subject is difficult to put into words. Mothers of children with disabilities often feel as though they have failed in some way. They may feel responsible for their child’s condition, even if there was no way to prevent it. This is typically not helped by criticism from others. Whether it be in schools, social settings or while managing day-to-day life, there is always someone there to share their unwarranted opinions. This only adds to the shame and makes these circumstances feel even more impossible to overcome.

Despite the many challenges of having a child with disabilities, it is important to remember that mothers are not alone in their experiences. There are support groups, resources and communities that can provide comfort and understanding. Motherhood is a complex and nuanced experience, and there is no one right way to navigate the challenges that come with raising a child with disabilities.

The shame and guilt that mothers of children with disabilities go through can be all-encompassing. It’s important to acknowledge the emotional weight of these experiences and to offer support and understanding to those who are struggling. If you are struggling with similar feelings, please reach out to others for support. It may be the bravest, most impactful action a mother can take.


Brought to you by:

Kids NW

922 NW Circle Blvd, Ste 160-112

Corvallis, OR 97330 | 1.888.360.0360

Audrey Benson Behavior Supervisor

KIDS NW connects families with compassionate caregivers, specially trained in serving individuals with disabilities.


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