In every culture, values, norms and lifestyles differentiate. However, there is one aspect of any society that does not differ greatly is the importance of family. The role of family is of great significance in all societies because it is the main foundation and structure of community itself. The family typically consists of a mother, a father and a child or children. For the continuation of family foundation and the society itself , giving birth to a child is considered vital in most cultures. What is at issue is that every parent wishes their children to be born healthily. However, a large number of children are born with a certain disabilities because of genetic, environmental, or unexplained reasons. And having a disabled child has several major effects on families: financial, psychological, and social effects.
One of the important effects of having a disabled child is to do with finace. Having a disabled child entails long-term economic costs. Since parents with a disabled child have to spend more time with their child, the mother, and less often the father will either curtail hours of work or stop working altogether. This leads to an economic decline of the family. Secondly, the disabled child’s personal expenses are very high and these expenses increases as s/he grows up. For instance, if your disabled child is wetting her/his clothes, you will have to pay a lot of money for diapers for years.
Secondly, parents are psychologically affected by having a handicapped child. The presence of an individual with a disability in the family influences the entire family psychologically, especially the parents. It is a fact that having a child born with a disability is a life-long adaptation period for parents. With the sudden shock of such unexpected situation at birth, parents may initially tend to reject the disabled child. Therefore, necessary psychological measures should be taken so that parents can easily get through this period and learn to accept the child. Besides, another affected group is siblings who have to grow up within this family climate. Therefore, the risk for siblings to suffer from emotional and behavioural problems must be taken into account when officials provide preventive interventions and professional support for both parents and siblings
Finally, parents with a disabled child are subject to social effects. They face a lot of difficulties in their social life. To exemplify, in our daily life, there are lots of intolerant people around us. This type of people can never tolerate the presence of an individual with disabilities nearby, such as on buses, and they are involved in rude behaviors that manifest their discontent by constantly grunting and whining. Because of the presence of such people around them, parents sacrifice their social lives and lead a more closed life. However, this should not be the case. Community members should be conscious and parents who have disabled children should not be alienated by the society. Disabled people and other members of the society should be brought together in various activities. In this way, people can set up a society in a true sense.
In summary, families with a disabled child are exposed to financial, psychological and social influences. In my opinion, these parents and siblings need to express their disappointment, anger, and frustrations and learn to accept the child for his own character. There is an African saying: “It takes a village to raise a child.” Communities can help the handicapped to have access to transportation, have jobs, and take part in social activities. All people should do their part to make disabled children’s and their parents’ life better and improve such children’s character, personality, and skills.