Video describing Diagnosis For My Children Led Me To Alcohol And Self-harming
Read the transcript of the Diagnosis for my Children led me to Alcohol video

You and your partner

You may experience different emotions at different times. Try to be honest with each other about how you feel. Make time for yourselves. Try to listen to each other and respect each other’s feelings. Try to continue some hobbies or interests if you can.

Family and friends

Often people can be uncomfortable and unsure how to respond to the news that your child has additional needs, especially if they don’t know any other children who are disabled. Try to remember your child is a child first and foremost. They need love and support. As far as possible, try to give your child the same life experiences as you would any other child.

  • Talk to friends and families about your child’s condition – the more you talk about it, the easier it will become for you.
  • Ask friends and family to babysit - even if only for half an hour while you pop to the shops.
  • Try to continue your family routines as much as possible.


They may also be worried and upset. Or they might even deny that anything is happening. Like you, they may be coming to terms with new emotions. Give them time to adjust. 

  • Discuss with grandparents what the professionals are telling you.
  • Grandparents may want to help with babysitting or give you and your family the occasional break from your routine. Ask them to help if they are able to.
  • Show them how to care for your child so they can help you.
  • Involve grandparents in important decisions about your child’s care and medical treatments where you can. Some may want to be involved in visits to professionals or support groups.
Read more tips for grandparents in our online community.

Contact our helpline

I found friends were more than happy to help – you just had to ask.