Mental and physical disabilitiesPage 5/6: Topic C: Working to promote positive self-esteem in children with disabilities
Topic C: Working to promote positive self-esteem in children with disabilities
More important than the disability in itself is how children learn to perceive themselves. If they have grown up among caregivers who value them as persons, they will of course do so themselves.
However, children with a disability often experience mobbing from peers and others.
It is important to talk with the child regularly and help it find strategies for coping with such experiences. It is also important to inform other children about the child’s disability and make it clear that a disabled child deserves as much respect as any other child. This can be done by including the child in group activities and make other children perceive it as someone they should protect and help. You should also not accept incidents of mobbing or violence towards the disabled child.
If you have contact with the biological parents, it can be helpful to have conversations with them about how they feel about having a child with a disability. You can use these conversations to show them that you accept them and understand their problems. Parents of disabled children often feel extreme guilt, they may be afraid of being condemned by others, and they may have reacted of becoming overprotective towards the child. Giving them the experience of meeting an interested and attentive professional can be very helpful and does not require anything but interest and compassion