Your child is a gift, an opportunity and a challenge

Understanding strength and weaknesses of your child and working around it

Wed Jan 12, 2022

For Parents

"My love for you is taller than the sky and wider than the galaxy" 

It is impossible to measure the amount of love we have for our children. There is a no bigger pain to see our children suffer from a problem. But if they have an invisible problem that makes them behave differently, develop at a different pace or have an underlying Neurodisability, it can be very painful. 

It is not just the day to day problems we might face, also acceptance in society, the future of the child can affect us as parents. 

It is not unusual to be angry, blame self or others or be in complete denial about the situation. In my experience, I have seen a lot of parents embarking on a journey to 'normalise' their children. Often it would mean bargaining 'if only I could improve his attention span' or 'If only she could walk' or 'If only he could talk'. 

So, what is the problem here and why it is important to be addressed?

It is very important to understand that a baby has three main factors responsible for their brain building. I use 'brain building' as terminology here as there is substantial evidence that the human brain develops layer by layer based on the genetic code and supplemented by adequate nutrition. 

Lessons from children who are subjected to abuse show that children can develop 'Attachment disorder'. This shows the significance of the environment experienced by the child. 

In children with an underlying Neurodisability such as Autism Spectrum Disorder, it is difficult to understand how the child feels or why the child is not talking or their behaviours. The biggest problem for the child is that they are not able to explain their real problem. 

Let me explain this. For example, a child with Autism has a speech delay. The parents decided that goal is for my child to start talking. But have they taken into account the communication stage of the child? Are they communicating with the child to their developmentally appropriate level? But if they are not doing so, feel frustrated or do not have a step ladder plan the behaviour of the child deteriorates. 

What is Child's Behaviour and why it is not important to treat? 

Children behaviour could be their communication. It is a combination of how they feel, how much they can communicate and the environment around them. Usually, most intervention in Neurodisability focusses on improving the development of the child and treating the behaviour separately. But are we treating the child's problem or the parent's problem? Why is this child not talking? If the hearing is normal and if the mouth/tongue has no problem why the child does not talk? 

It is important that we now learn the language of a child's behaviour and work in a child-led way, at the child's pace and work around their strengths and weaknesses. If you are a parent, teacher, psychologist, therapist, or Doctor this course will provide a new perspective to look at children and new strategies that you can start using straight away. Click here for courses

Dr Rahul Bharat

Paediatrician, NHS Clinical Entrepreneur, Teacher, Clinical Safety Officer, Early interventionist