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Working With Handicapped Children

During the ten years that I was Medical Director of the Center for Handicapped Children in Contra Costa County, I have given dozens of lectures on working with handicapped children. Some of these lectures have made such a difference in the lives of both the parents and their children that I want to share some of them here from time to time.

It is difficult to understand the full impact of a handicapped child upon a family. First we must have some understanding of the impact of a healthy child upon the lives of his parents and siblings. The meaning of parenthood and the expectations and goals of each parent includes the joy of giving, of sharing, of watching and re-experiencing the mystery of life unfold before their eyes and the feeling that comes with knowing that they are part of it. However, along with this there comes a constant drain of energy and emotions,  self-doubts regarding discipline, health concerns, frequent exasperation and loss of patience.