Explain why parents of children with genetic disorders often experience increased stress.  Include in your response information of the factors within and beyond the family, that can help these...

Explain why parents of children with genetic disorders often experience increased stress.  Include in your response information of the factors within and beyond the family, that can help these parents support their development.

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mizzwillie | Middle School Teacher | (Level 1) Senior Educator

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This question is one I live. Parents of children with genetic disorders experience increased stress because of several factors.  One, the self-blame is a heavy weight to carry.  Often the parents are not aware that their particular combination of genes will produce the disorder.  Two, watching the child deal with the effects of the disorder is heart-breaking especially  if the parent feels at fault for being the cause.  Other siblings of the parent may be unaccepting of the child and the disorder making family reunions or Christmas or any other celebration doubly difficult.  Outside the family, strangers can add to the stress so very easily.  In a store, one can often hear the whispers, the loud comments about the child's behavior, the wishing that the child was not allowed into that building or play or musical performance.  To help the parents support their child, the parents need to find a good doctor, a medical and school support system which understands what the parent and child are experiencing, and friends and family who support the child and the parent.  Much easier said than done, a parent must continue the search even if it takes years to find.  On-line groups of parents with children with the same condition help with support. A family counselor may also help. The road can be long and lonely, but must be walked for the sake of the child and even the parent.

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