The Invisibility of Special Needs


I am a special needs parent.

Those six words are hard to type. Because I don’t think of my children as having special needs; they are just my kids. Not all special needs can be “seen”. You probably wouldn’t be able to tell just by looking at my kids. However, you would probably stare, and dare I say judge, if you saw us having a hard moment in a grocery store or other public place. (Though we rarely go out.) I think the other aspect of the term special needs I hate is that it is such a huge umbrella used to cover a far too wide range of things. 

Kid hugging momWe have challenges. COVID has been a giant blow in many ways, but it has been a huge mental health setback. I also have to acknowledge how hard it has been to get help. It has literally been a full-time job. I completely understand why people get frustrated and give up and don’t get the help they need. There really should be a Tinder for therapists! The struggle could not be more real. 

Special needs moms need some extra love. We need you to check on us. Bring us coffee. Let us cry. Maybe do our Costco run for us because our kids just can’t handle it. Just drop us a text and tell us we are in your thoughts and prayers – and that things will get better. Some special needs moms will never be “empty nesters”. Please do not let these women be invisible to you. 

So, what’s the point?

This is just a friendly reminder that not all special needs are seen by the naked eye. Be kind to your fellow moms. You just do not know what they are going through. You may not see the needs, but you can see the moms. 

If you are a special needs mom, please don’t give up. You’ve got this. You are not alone. I see you.

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Textbook extrovert. If there’s a stage, Jenny wants to be on it; whether it’s singing in church, doing stand-up comedy or acting. She has recently joined a cult called LuLaRoe. Her husband, David, is deeply concerned. Jenny and David, a pastor, are recently celebrating eighteen years of marriage. After years of infertility, they became adoptive parents of two year old twin boys in 2014. They’ve never been happier or more exhausted. Every day is an adventure. Jenny blogs at and has a regular feature in Tualatin Life newspaper called Everyday Heroes to celebrate those serving our community. She and her husband started a clothing line based on their story and you can check it out at There’s nothing we can’t do with a little bit of love and a whole lot of caffeine.