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Single Mom of Special Needs Child

Posted by on May. 7, 2012 at 11:22 PM
  • 10 Replies

I am a single Mom of a 7 year old boy diagnosed with Pervasive Developmental Disorder (Autism). We have lived with my Parents since he was a baby. His Dad left when he was 4 months old so my Parents let me stay with them so I would be able to be a stay at Mom until he started school, but when he was 4 he was diagnosed with PDD which changed my future quite a bit. He requires a lot of attention and extra help. I don't have many people I trust him with or that truly understand his unique differences so I'm there pretty much all the time. His Dad isn't really in the picture. I had planned on going to school when he started Kindergarten, but I don't even know how I would hold a job and also be there for him at home. I feel like I'm stuck at my Parents. I am already 28 and I still live with them. I have absolutely no schooling and I just wish things were easier. It would be nice to have a place of my own, but I don't even see how that would be possible. I need to be there to take my son to school, pick him up, take him to therapy appointments. I have to do all of those things for him. Plus he gets sick a lot and has many sensory issues which make school extremely difficult. How am I supposed to do that and also have a job? He needs so much extra help and guidence. Has anybody been in a similar situation? How can I be a single Mom living on her own with a child with special needs and still be there for him? I feel like I'm stuck and not going anywhere in life. Any suggestions?

by on May. 7, 2012 at 11:22 PM
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by on May. 8, 2012 at 1:04 AM

 Hi and welcome... have you checked into programs that help single parents or low income families? Housing assistance or section 8 is a start to be on your own, also does he recieve SSI benefits? Schools offer life skills classes for children like your son. You can also apply for medicaid and food stamps... I have a special needs child + 2 more and I am a single mother... There is no shame in asking for and recieving help when you truly need it. I have been on the programs and they help you as long as you try to help better yourself(to an extent) As far as furthering your education, go for it. Look into Pell grants and scholarships... even if the scholarships are not in the field you want to major in... fingers crossed

by on May. 8, 2012 at 1:12 AM
Depending on where you live, there are schools that work specifically with autism or general special needs & it works just like a regular school, ie. buses, school vacations, & a 8-3 schedule.
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by on May. 8, 2012 at 1:43 AM
Hi! For 13 years all ive done is work with children who have autism - PDD is on the autism spectrum. Two things to do - file for SSI and locate an in-home intensive autism provider. If you have problems finding out how to apply for SSI, locate your local Social Development Commission. Do a google search for in-home autism in your area. Let me know how it goes! Id be happy to help you figure this out. :)
by on May. 8, 2012 at 3:39 AM

Ok well I dont know anythign about PDD but should join the group raising special needs kids group....they can really give you son is a special needs but I dont know what the diagnose is....but I wish you the best of luck..

by on May. 8, 2012 at 8:06 AM
Im a mom with 3 boys with autism, op, I had to quit my job when my two younger sons were both dx months apart, I been out of work for almost 4 yrs now, we live on the kids ssi, I also did not get to finish college I had to also drop out when they were dx, witch left me with massive defaulted student loans I cant afford to pay, getting a job is damn near impossible bc of all the appointments they have, pretty soon im gonna try home business bc I cannot hold a traditional 9-5 job, raiseing children with disabilities takes a strong mind, spirit, throw on your suit of armour, and prepare to do battle for your child for the rest of your life, good luck
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by on May. 8, 2012 at 10:07 AM

 Welcome.  Check out the 'parenting children with special needs' groups on Cafe Mom.  There are all kinds of people with all kinds of stories and ideas in those kinds of groups.  I have a 7 yr old daughter with PDD and I completely understand how you feel.  Start with applying for SSI and foodstamps.  And try to find out about the Autism Society support group in your can meet people there who have all kinds of ways they are dealing with these kinds of issues.  When I first was searching for a daycare for my daughter, I interviewed every place in town, and its a struggle but I found a place.  They are pretty good with her.  Compassion is the key if people don't have lots of info on dealing with our kids.  For preschool, look into Head Start if you have one in your area.  It was the perfect place for my daughter.  Its hard to trust others with our kids but we have to at some point.  I take my daughter to school every day too. It starts late so I  get to work late and my day ends later that's the best idea I have and but she is my priority, and if she needs me at any time, I am there to leap tall buildings in a single bound for her.  Daycare picks her up after school and I pick her up after work.  But the rest of the day I go to work and do what I need to.  I strongly urge you to go to school.  Your son is the priority but so are you.  And if you are personally fulfilled and have your own place, you will be happier and will be able to pass that along to your son.  Good luck! 

by on May. 8, 2012 at 10:39 AM
Have you gotten him on disability to help?
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by on May. 8, 2012 at 1:33 PM

My son is on SSI, but most of the therapies I am wanting to try out are not covered by insurance and it can get quite expensive and that's not even including supplements, vitamins, and everything else he is needing. It's difficult to save up when everything is so expensive.

by on May. 8, 2012 at 1:45 PM

 Honestly, I had to let it go so that I could provide for him.  Would my son have done better with a SAHM who could take him to therapy multiple times a week...  probably, but that wasn't an option. 

So, I juggled ALOT.  We worked with the school for therapy, I found afterschool care I thought would at lease keep him whole and safe, I found a therapist who worked on Saturdays, I got into a school program I could do two nights a week and arranged childcare with my parents during that time, and I learned as much as I could to do therapy with him at home. 

I basically had no personal life an no real sleep for about 4 years until I finished with school.  But I finished it, I have a better job, and now I get to be home every evening with him at least! 

by on May. 8, 2012 at 2:25 PM
I am a single mom of a son who is autistic, ADHD, OCD, and does not talk. We live with my mom. I work part-time and go to graduate school. Sweetie, you need to accept help and let others take care of your child. I know it is hard, but you have to let go and let your child form relationships with others.
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