March 30, 2016 | By: Paso del Norte Children’s Development Center
Why parents of children with disabilities or special health-care should needs attend support group or parent group meetings? Because support groups are a great way to meet people that have something in common with you.
Having a child with disabilities can be an overwhelming task. Often, parents have many questions that can be answered only by other parents that have gone through the same experience.
There are many support groups in El Paso available to parents. There are disability-specific support groups such as the Down Syndrome Association, the Autism Society of El Paso, the Attention Deficit Disorder Support Group, the Epilepsy Support Group, etc.
There are also groups that are not specific to any disability, but instead they welcome everyone that has a child with a disability, such as Mentes Brillantes.
Mothers often need to talk to other mothers without having other family there. There is a support group for mothers only called the Ladies in Blue. Although they focus on autism, they also welcome other mothers who want to join.
Meeting times vary to help meet the needs of families’ busy lives. Some meet during the day, others meet in the evening.
All of the support groups also gather to celebrate special holidays. December is a busy month as groups plan events for families to celebrate. Many families look forward to attending a social gathering where they will find other children with the same disability as theirs. This is true for families that have children with autism. They are concerned that their child’s behavior will be judged by families that do not understand autism. A social event with families that understand each other provides a chance to relax and enjoy themselves.
All of the support groups invite guest speakers to talk on topics of interest to the group. While parents listen, the children are cared for by experienced adults who encourage socializing and play.
Support groups are a great way to connect, learn, and create friendships for parents and for children.
Look for a support group meeting that is happening soon close to where you live by going to the Finding Services, Groups, and Events on this website. You may even be able to share your knowledge with another family.