Having a child with Down Syndrome impacts the lives of every member of his/her family. Two questions that may come to mind for parents with other children.
How to talk with children about their sibling with Down Syndrome?
Like many other topics, this should be discussed honestly and at a level that the child can understand. For young children, it can be helpful for parents to give the child a practiced response to use when a question about their sibling with Down Syndrome arises. This can help your child feel more comfortable and confident. For example, “That is my sister. She is just like you and me. Sometimes, she can take longer to learn things.”
What impact will my child with Down Syndrome have on my other children?
Literature suggests that for most individuals, having a sibling with Down syndrome is a positive experience. An article published in 2011, Having a Brother or Sister with Down Syndrome: Perspectives from Siblings, asked both younger children and adults about their views on their sibling with Down syndrome, including their feelings toward their sibling and their impact on their lives. The overwhelming response is that individuals loved and were proud of their sibling with Down Syndrome.
More resources for siblings
- Fasten Your Seatbelt: A Crash Course on Down Syndrome for Brothers and Sisters
- 47 Strings. Tessa’s Special Code
This post was originally published on the Madison Area Down Syndrome Society blog.