It seems in our current society we live in a place where anything negative or anything that might offend shouldn’t be talked about or discussed. Parents are not super human.

Ohhhh. Might upset that person.

Ohhhh. Might not be well received by this group.

So many times people suffer in silence because they feel they can’t talk about their hurts or struggles and this then makes them feel like they’re alone in their struggles. It’s isolating. Silencing. Scary and lonely.

So what happens if we just don’t?

When you are the parent of a child with special needs you’re often made out to be this ‘super woman’ or ‘amazing’ parent. But it’s actually not the whole truth. You’re just a human being. Doing what you can. Some days you give it your all and the silver linings are not hard to find, and in fact you manage to collect many. Other days you’re crying in a crumpled ball in the corner of the room because you are feeling so absolutely overwhelmed and stretched and completely out of your depth. You feel unqualified.

When I’m writing about my daughters and I’m having a shit day with them; that doesn’t mean I love them any less. When I’m describing the struggles they may be having, or the effects their behaviour (even involuntary behaviour) is having on me and the the rest of our family: that doesn’t mean I wish they didn’t exist.

I’m writing about it because it’s really really hard. And maybe my writing about it will make someone experiencing similar emotions regarding the same situations a little less alone.

Maybe I’m writing about it because I’m not coping. And you know what? That’s OKAY. It’s okay not to cope some days. We aren’t super human. We are HUMAN. And we may have our hearts smashed into pieces from sheer pressure and confusion and exhaustion some days, maybe for some months – but we slowly piece ourselves back together and try again.

Because what other option is there? I won’t give up on my girls. I know they won’t give up on me.

I was thinking about how I’d feel if I was the daughter reading my mother’s recounts of my struggles, trying to put myself in my daughter’s shoes. Thinking about how I’d react, and how I’d feel.

And you know what?

I’d feel proud. Because I’d read that my mother found it really tough but she never gave up on me. She kept searching, trying, problem solving. I’d want her to look after herself, too. And I’d be so proud of her for wanting to reach out to others on a similar journey.

Parents are not super human.

Not even parents of autistic children, or children with other special needs. We are just human. Some days are utter bullshit. Some days are fantastic. It cycles, it ebbs and flows.

We are strong but we are weak.

We celebrate,

we cry.

We conquer

we admit defeat.

But we never.


Give up.

Can you relate to this? Please comment below.

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  • I work with special needs children and see them and their parents daily. Some days you can tell that the parents are just exhausted. Just yesterday I lifted a Dads mood simply because I got his son to say “bye” to me. For me it was a simple thing but the Dad couldnt stop smiling so i know I made his day.


  • As parents we can only do the best we can and that is fine.


  • Parents in general need to learn to build each other up, learn that because you parent in one style, doesnt mean it is the only way. Putting it out there that some days are a huge struggle, whether your child has a disability or not, is a good thing. Because some days are just plain hard! Some days it starts at waking, barely being able to drag yourself out of bed, let alone prepare nutritious lunches, be happy and perky when you get asked 17 times where the shoes are!
    My son is my world, but that doesnt mean that sometimes, it feels like hard work. But oh, that smile, that hug, that little sigh when he is asleep in bed…perfection.


  • Yep. Other people tell you you’re wonderful, but they don’t really understand what you’re dealing with.


  • Great article


  • What a great article. As a new time mum who is staying home from work for a year, I feel the need to ‘do it all’ but sometimes this is not the case, nor is it achievable. At times I feel guilty, at times I feel over whelmed with the amount of ‘nothing’ I have to do (which were normal everyday task before baby like washing or cooking). But I realise that I cannot be a super women to everything and the most important part of my day should be spending time with my baby!!


  • Great read – thanks for sharing. Your comments fit many other experiences not just rearing children!


  • I loved what you wrote & how true it is. Its amazing how so many people with special needs etc get told how amazing they are & yes, please don’t get me wrong I admire them too & sometimes wonder if I would cope, but at the same time why do we who are just everyday mums quite often get over looked at being just as amazing. I love that my daughter & I are very close & that she knows she can come to me about anything. She has commented quite often how a lot of her friends wouldn’t talk or tell their mums half the things she tells me. Don’t get me wrong there are days we shout at each other, don’t talk or she makes me so angry but we never go to bed angry. I know I must be doing things right with her as no matter what she tells me she loves me & is proud of me being her mum & is so lucky. The same in a different way goes for my 2 boys. People are always commenting on their manners, work ethics etc. At the end of the day all us mums just want to do the best for our kids, hope they have happy memories. We will always love our children unconditional & do the best we can.


  • Amen, we sure aren’t super human !


  • Absolutely, I agree. We’re all doing the best we can with the situation we’re in. I don’t love the term ‘super’ at all. We battle through, we work through, we laugh, we cry. My hubby and I look at each other sometimes and say “gee, this is tough”. But, we’re in it together, doing the best we can for our family. We’re not super human… we’re human! This gig of parenting is hard, but we’re also tougher, stronger, and proud of what we achieve as a family.


  • Great read, so honest & true. Thank you.


  • Thank you for sharing your story which may have been very difficult to do.This is a great account of how hard can be to keep yourself on track for even part of the time. Too many take everything for granted. They never think of those who may be struggling through no fault of their own. Very rarely do they offer help in any way.


  • I can relate in so far as I was a carer for my father and I had good days and bad days. I remember one time I saw an acquaintance and when she asked how I was I said I was feeling lousy and overwhelmed. She went on to tell a mutual friend of ours that same day that I was depressed and not coping. That mutual friend phoned me to see if I was alright. I thought the whole thing was amusing. Aren’t we allowed to have lousy days without being labelled depressed? On the other hand, it was nice that they cared enough to check on me.


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