As children become adults, they naturally want independence from their parents. But this can be tricky when children have severe disabilities, because parents often remain their primary caregivers into adulthood.
Instead, a transition may be made to interdependence. This may include ongoing physical and financial support from parents, but with boundaries, responsibilities and, as one child development expert emphasizes, “no victims, no martyrs, everybody has a life.”
Experienced parent-caregivers offer these tips for teaching independence skills from an early age:
Excerpted from Parent-Caregiver Transition — Learning to Let Go, Quest, November-December 2004, ©2004, Muscular Dystrophy Association