The Unsupportive Family Members
Play • 9 min

This is a difficult topic for many. I’ve had the opportunity to speak to other parents and this is one of their struggles. 

When going through this journey, and especially in the initial diagnosis, you may run across family members who don’t understand, are unsupportive, not willing to learn about the diagnosis, may even say things like - it’s just a phase. 

You may have to reset your own expectations of your family members.

They may not be able to provide the support you need, your child needs, your family needs. 

Let me ask you a question. What does support look like to you? Are you not receiving what you need? 

The truth is, they may not be able to give you what you need, the type of support you’re looking for. This could be for many reasons, and reasons I have heard include: 

  • They don’t understand the diagnosis. They don’t understand what’s going on 
  • They are in denial - they may not want to understand, they may be telling themselves something different because of denial
  • They don’t believe in the diagnosis - they think it’s a phase
  • Cultural beliefs - I have heard in some countries, autism and other special needs are viewed as mental illnesses, which is incredibly sad, but unfortunately true.

So, what do you when you have family members who do not and cannot support you. 

  • Realize you can’t control anyone else. You can advocate and try to educate as much as possible, but ultimately, you can’t control how they think, or their actions. 
  • Be clear with them on how they can support you - they may just not know how they can support your child and family. You may need to give them a blueprint on how to guide them to provide better support.
  • Realize some people are not capable of meeting your expectations. YOU may need to change your expectations of them. 
  • Set boundaries. If there is any negative talk about your child and their special needs, you can set boundaries to not accept, listen to or tolerate negative talk. 
  • Seek out others who understand and create your own support group. This may need to be outside of your family - other parents, moms, community members, church - seek out other people who are open, supportive and inclusive

The bottom line is sometimes family is not the source of support. As much as we may believe family should be inclusive, supportive and helpful - they may not always be and it could be for the previous reasons I mentioned. It’s important for you to be clear on what that support looks like, to set expectations and boundaries, and to seek out support elsewhere if you’re not able to receive it through your family. 

That’s it for this episode. If you can relate to this, please follow this podcast so you never miss an episode and share this podcast to those who may need it. If you need help, I am a mindset and life coach - DM me @susanfink.rise or you can also check out my site to connect. I want you to remember is you’re not alone in this journey. Stay connected, reach out, there are solution out there to help you!

My mission is to help as many people as I can and I cannot do that without you. Thank you, thank you thank you for listening, thank you for your support in sharing this podcast to help others. And until next time, I appreciate, I empathize, and I am here for you. and...We...can do this

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