Special Siblings

Siblings of children with special needs have special needs themselves.  Often, the special siblings will get a bigger share of attention as he/she requires more focus. This alone can create negative feelings toward the special needs sibling – feelings such as jealousy, anger, and resentment. While having a special needs siblings can present challenges, it also comes with opportunities. That’s right, those who grow up with a sibling with special needs also develop many positive qualities, including:

  • they learn to be patient
  • they exhibit kindness
  • learning the importance of acceptance
  • they learn to acceptance differences
  • they learn to have and show compassion
  • they exhibit empathy for others and insight into coping with challenges
  • they are dependable and can take care of their sibling (often when other adults are incapable)
  • loyalty that may come from standing up for their brother or sister – that’s right, they experience firsthand the harmful effects of bullying
  • they learn advocacy skills to advocate on behalf of their sibling

Because children with special needs siblings often face so many unique challenges, finding a support system can be critical in their development. Understanding and addressing this need is why this group exists.