| Jan 2020

Never Say This To Someone with a Special Needs Child


You know what I’m guilty of? Saying the phrase: “Let me know if you need anything.” Especially to friends of mine with special needs children. What I learned this week from Dr. Emily King (our favorite child and adolescent psychologist podcast guest) is that empty gesture doesn’t do anyone any favors. How many times has someone actually taken me up on this offer? Zero. It’s because parents of special needs kids are busy. They can be overwhelmed. Some are probably very, very tired. The last thing they are thinking of is “I should call Kim to let her know how to help.” To anyone who I have ever said this to, I know how to be better now.

“Do the best you can until you know better.

Then when you know better, do better.”

 – Maya Angelou 

Being More Proactive

Instead of an empty offer, I could have dropped a surprise dinner off at their house. I could have made plans to come over after the kids are in bed with a bottle of wine. And the best idea of all from Dr. King, I could have popped over one Saturday morning and LET THESE PARENTS GO BACK TO BED. This week we go through a number of things you should never say to a parent with a special needs child. (Spoiler alert: Penn and I have definitely said some of these before.) However, we stress how important it is to engage the right way. Just because we discuss what not to say, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t talk at all. 

We hope you learn something from this very important podcast. And we’d love to hear from parents with special needs kids in our Facebook Group. Please join our discussion!

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The Holderness family has been dancing in pajamas and singing during snow days for years — but last year they hit the record button on the camera and published their goofy video on YouTube. Penn, Kim, Lola, and Penn Charles continue to make hilarious videos around tent-pole events and circumstances most families face.