A system of care. A community of support.
As individuals, each of us has our own network of support based on the personal and professional relationships in which we are connected. Our own families, friends, neighborhood communities and places of worship or spiritual guidance are common connections that create each family’s own network of support. Personal experiences shape the connections we make with our existing communities of support. By virtue of unique experiences, parents of children with special needs, including parents of children with hearing loss, often seek out additional resources and information to support their child, their role as a parent and their family as a whole.
In times of stress and uncertainty most people seek support from those with whom they have a strong relationship. This support usually comes from family and close friends. It is important to reach out to those people we trust, because as Jeree Pawl Ph.D., noted researcher and infant mental health expert says, “No one should have to go on a difficult journey alone.” Family and close friends can be a safe haven. Talking about your feelings and concerns with someone you trust, who you know cares about you is not only helpful, it is essential to maintaining a sense of balance in your life. If neither family nor close friends are a source of support, it is important you find someone you can trust, someone who understands. Talking to a parent of a child with hearing loss can be very helpful. Parents of children with hearing loss can often offer suggestions and be supportive in ways you need them to be.
As you build relationships to help you on this journey, don’t underestimate the power of your love.
The most important thing you can give your baby is someone who loves them fully and thinks they are special. This is probably more important than anything else.