Parenting any child has challenges, and there certainly isn’t a one-size-fits-all approach. About one in six U.S. children has at least one developmental disability, which can be physical, behavioral, or related to language and learning. Children with special needs can require additional resources and parenting skills.

Knowing the tools to communicate effectively and understand your child — as well as deal with your own feelings in a healthy way — can mean a big difference in your relationship and your child’s success. These books tackle a variety of different special needs topics and offer insight, inspiration, and practical tips.

The Child with Special Needs: Encouraging Intellectual and Emotional Growth

The Child with Special Needs is a step-by-step guide for parents and educators on how to successfully work with special needs children. After teaching you how to move beyond labels, the book demonstrates techniques for getting a child to reach developmental milestones. It covers several disabilities and developmental delays, including autism, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), language and speech problems, Down syndrome, and cerebral palsy.

The Explosive Child

Kids generally need help learning to process and regulate their emotions. But an explosive child may need a different parenting style to move past frequent outbursts, like crying fits, spitting, hitting, screaming, or destroying property. Rewards and punishment may not be the correct approach. The Explosive Child is a guide to understanding why your child responds to frustration in such an extreme way and what you can do to help them problem solve and learn to tools to get their behavior in check.

Get Your Joy Back: Banishing Resentment and Reclaiming Confidence in Your Special Needs Family

Feeling anger and resentment is totally normal. As a parent of a special needs child, it’s not uncommon to feel fatigue or exhaustion from fighting for your child’s best interests and trying to provide the care they need. Get Your Joy Back is a Christian-themed resource for special needs parents, full of biblical insights to help you recharge. It’s also written from the perspective of a parent who has been there herself.

Play to Talk: A Practical Guide to Help Your Late-Talking Child Join the Conversation

Play to Talk is a step-by-step guide to help children of all ages learn valuable conversational and social skills. The book offers ways to turn play into opportunities to grow language development and relationship learning. Help your child expand on the way they communicate with family and others — and let them have some fun while they’re at it.

Refresh: Spiritual Nourishment for Parents of Children with Special Needs

Refresh is a spiritual guide for parents of special needs children. The book draws on Bible scripture to help parents deal with feelings like frustration, loss, and grief. There are also stories from other parents who have been through those experiences before. It’s written to provide hope and restore faith for those going through a rough patch in their special needs parenting journey.

The Elephant in the Playroom: Ordinary Parents Write Intimately and Honestly About Raising Kids with Special Needs

Parenting a child with special needs can feel lonely at times. Connecting with others who are going through the same challenges can really help. The Elephant in the Playroom is full of stories and experiences from other moms and dads who have been there. Parents from all over the United States who have kids with a variety of developmental delays, sensory issues, and learning disabilities, share how they learned to take care of themselves and their kids.

The Everything Parent's Guide to Special Education

School presents another unique challenge for parents of special needs kids. You want your child to have the best education without getting lost in the system. In order to get that, you’ll have to learn how to become your child’s advocate. The Everything Parent's Guide to Special Education teaches you how to do exactly that, with guides on navigating the special education system, information on current disability laws, and tips for working with your child’s school.

Shut Up About Your Perfect Kid: A Survival Guide for Ordinary Parents of Special Children

Two sisters get real about parenting their special needs kids in Shut Up About Your Perfect Kid. Gina and Patty talk about the stigma and frustrations many special needs parents face in a way only moms who have been there can. They also offer advice for finding support groups, helping your child, taking care of yourself, and dealing with insensitive behavior from strangers, friends, or family members.

Raising Your Spirited Child: A Guide for Parents Whose Child Is More Intense, Sensitive, Perceptive, Persistent, and Energetic

It’s pretty common for parents to feel like they’re at a loss when it comes to meltdowns — how to prevent them, and how to handle them. Raising Your Spirited Child offers some insight into these behavior patterns from a parenting expert. The book also provides tips for effective discipline, managing meltdowns, keeping your temper in check, and more.

Positive Discipline for Children with Special Needs: Raising and Teaching All Children to Become Resilient, Responsible, and Respectful

Positive Discipline for Children with Special Needs is a guide to practical solutions for the challenges parents of kids with special needs can face. It answers questions like: How do you accommodate a child’s disability and still help them reach their full potential? And: How do you teach them to manage emotions they may have trouble understanding and expressing?

The Special Needs Planning Guide: How to Prepare for Every Stage of Your Child’s Life

Financial planning may not be the first thing you think about, but it’s going to be a big part of your child’s future. You’ll need to think about how your child will be supported and cared for throughout life, including when you’re no longer there. The Special Needs Planning Guide explains financial terms, has planning checklists, and details government benefits and legal terms. It’s a reference you can use throughout each stage of your life.

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