Learning disabilities can have a large impact on a person’s home-life as well. Social difficulties, hyperactivity, disorganisation and communication-issues can all affect a family, as can the stress that people bring home when their days at work or school are difficult. Additionally, having one member of a family who requires more help can leave other siblings feeling ignored; and having a child who struggles is a stressor on any marriage.
In order for families to weather these issues, the first step is ensuring that all members understand and recognize the effects of LDs/ADHD. Speaking openly (and courteously) about the issues, rather than pretending they are not there, can go a long way to decreasing a family’s stress.
Family counselling is an option worth exploring. When all members are equally stressed, having an outsider guide discussions may be the best option. It is important to remember that all members of a family are affected by the struggles of a single member, and so the stress of all members must be considered. When a family can work through hard times in a healthy, productive way, they can forge an even deeper bond.
Families can also do much to help with developing solid and effective compensatory strategies, since they know the person with LDs best. Group problem-solving around compensation can help a family member feel supported and confident, giving him or her more confidence to try the compensations at school. It also allows the person with the LDs the chance to practice their skills and strategies in a safe environment.