The Traps and Gaps of Special Needs Parenting

by Colleen Berlingieri Recently, my husband had surgery for prostate cancer. Not to worry. All is well and the procedure was a success. However, the process was grueling. It was a long s-l-o-w recovery filled with pain, exhaustion and pills – and that was just me – he had a hard time too! During the long weeks of his recovery we watched a lot of TV. One afternoon a commercial for a cancer drug came on. […]

How I Stay Calm in the Midst of Turmoil While Raising a Child with a Disability:

by LisaMarie Bernardo We all know that siblings can fight, argue and irritate each other. It can make for a very chaotic household environment. I find this even more challenging especially because my son struggles with a disability. I have tried for years to get my kids to get along but have yet to succeed. However, I have now realized that I can do something within myself to change my reaction to all of the bickering […]

Need for Health Behavior Models for Your Child with Disabilities

BY H. BARRY WALDMAN DDS, MPH, PHD AND STEVEN P. PERLMAN DDS, MSCD, DHL (HON) The facts are that these health behavior prospects are genuine possibilities as youngsters with disabilities reach their adult years. Repeated surveys do substantiate these consequences. “Obesity, binge drinking and smoking – you’ve got to be kidding. My child is only 6, 10, or 12 years old. How could you think of that? He/she has enough difficulties with disabilities to even […]

It Takes A Whole Village

The Nigerian proverb “It takes a whole village to raise a child” says it all, especially for those of us raising children with special needs. BY EOLANE Back in the 1980s, our village took a chance and reached out. My son learned to believe; although still physically challenged, he now is capable of living independently and has become a talented artist and owner of an international art corporation. He is 30 years old now, my […]

Donald, Chuck E. and the Benjamins

ANCORA IMPARO BY RICK RADER, MD ■ EDITOR-IN-CHIEF The jury found that Chuck E. Cheese violated the employment provisions of the ADA by discriminating against Donald when they fired him due to his disability; and they let Chuck E. Cheese know they meant business. Some things are worth remembering, especially when it involves wanting to hit someone over the head with a two-by-four. Such was a lawsuit (in 1999) involving an individual in a disability […]


I sincerely believe saying that, “Success is not shown in the things we have done, but it is in the things that we have had to overcome.“ BY LAUREN M. KOENIG AND H. BARRY WALDMAN, DDS, MPH, PHD [Definition] Overcoming: To defeat or succeed in controlling or dealing with something. Enter the two words “overcoming disabilities” on the Google search engine page and within fractions of a second, 956,000 web sites become available. It should […]

Travel Lessons With Family

BY PEG GRAFWALLNER, M.ED. We adopted our daughter, Ani, from a Bulgarian orphanage when she was five years, 11 months. Her life in the Eastern European orphanage was the stuff of every wretched newspaper article and every horrific magazine excerpt. When I met Ani in the orphanage, I knew something wasn’t quite right. I assumed she was scared and anxious.  However, upon arriving home, one of my former students came over to meet Ani. As […]

Taking Care Of The Caregiver

BY JENNIFER WOODWORTH, PSY.D “Self-compassion is simply giving the same kindness to ourselves that we would give to others.” – Christopher Germer Having a child with special needs requires extra care and attention from the family members that surround them. Special needs include children with physical, behavioral/emotional, developmental, and sensory impairments. This includes a range of abilities and challenges faced by each child and therefore the family as well. Often, the needs of the primary […]

Unique Summer Camp For Children Who Use Computers To Communicate

CAMPERS FROM ACROSS THE COUNTRY ARE WELCOME FROM AUGUST 21 TO 27 Camp Chatterbox, sponsored by Children’s Specialized Hospital, is a weeklong, overnight camp for children and young adults—ages 5 to 22, who use synthesized Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) devices. Camp Chatterbox offers two unique programs: a Family Program for children ages 5 to 14 and an Independence and Self-Advocacy Program for teens and young adults ages 15 to 22. All campers must be […]

“Invisible work” toll among family and unpaid caregivers

SOURCE: National Institutes of Health; BY Carol Torgan, Ph.D. At a Glance Unpaid caregivers who helped with the health care of older adults experienced emotional, physical, and financial difficulties, as well as lower work productivity. The findings provide a better understanding of the unmet needs and challenges of this often invisible workforce, which plays a key role in the health care system. Family and other unpaid caregivers perform many activities on a regular basis as […]