Our first lady, Michelle Obama, put a national face to a national problem when she took on the childhood obesity crisis. Unfortunately, the problem had become so severe that more than 25 percent of our children were already overweight. Why did this happen? The obesity epidemic is not isolated to children. More than 30 percent of adults are obese. In other words, no one is immune from this health crisis. The consequences of obesity are among our top health problems: heart disease, diabetes, arthritis and cancer.
Caregivers of dependents with special needs who receive Social Security Disability Income (SSDI) benefits must fully understand the nature, scope and duration of these benefits to effectively plan for the financial future of their dependent. When SSDI benefits are payable based on a caregiver’s working record to their adult dependent with special needs, the Social Security Administration (SSA )considers this type of benefit as a “child’s” benefit. It is this form of eligibility that this article will address.
It has taken me over a month to be able to write this after my son’s last IEP meeting. I have done about 20 drafts. Our next meeting happens today and I am walking on eggshells.
Why does it have to be like this? I have no real answer but here is a letter I wrote to our “IEP team”. Maybe I will bring it with me.
The guilt over having had enough summer “fun” with the kids…
I’m sitting here writing this article instead of facing the massive piles of laundry, some folded, some not most clean….
Names have been changed in the following article to protect the innocent. And the less innocent, but whatever.
This summer, I volunteered at a summer camp that taught young kids other languages. I took care of the children, played with them, and helped keep the classroom tidy. All in all, the camp was set up quite well – distinct schedules, reasonably tidy rooms, and friendly helpers. It was a good camp. I only had one problem with the camp – the children there. They weren’t really mean, per se – they just played a bit rough.
Parenthood, as well know, is a daily challenge. When you are pregnant your hope is that your baby will be healthy and delivery will be without any complications. I never really gave much thought to what it would be like to have a child with special needs or what it meant to be a parent to a child with special needs.
According to the National Institute of Mental Health, depression is the leading cause of disability among individuals between the ages of 15-44 in the United States, however, individuals of any age, including children, can experience depression. Symptoms of depression in youth can vary from child to child and according to developmental age. It has been noted to be one of the most common mental health issues in youth, with a prevalence of 2.5% (Birmaher et al., 1996) in children, increasing from between 4-8% in the beginning of adolescence up to 25% by the end of adolescence (Kessler et al, 2001). Depression can be a serious problem resulting in detrimental effects on family and peer relationships, academic performance, self-esteem, satisfaction with life, sleep and diet. Additionally, there is a significant risk of developing self-harming behaviors, eating disorders, addictions, and suicide when depression symptoms are present.
Let me start from the beginning and share a brief history of the Miracle League. In 1997 a baseball coach observed a child in a wheelchair on the spectator side of the fence. It was a sibling to one of his players. He invited the child to play and quickly realized the obstacles he had getting around the clay field with raised bases. In 2000, local Rotary and Ruritans came together to raise the money to build the 1st field located in Conyers, GA. Miracle League currently has 250 chapters; we are in 44 states, Puerto Rico, Canada & Australia.
Hi all. I am Cindy Szymonik, and I am the mom of two really great sons. A teen with VERY high functioning Asperger’s Syndrome, and an almost-teen with rather profound Autism. Over the years, I have kept a list in my head of some of their endearing (and maybe not so endearing) quirks. Now, we all have quirks. Kids who are not on the spectrum have some awesome quirks also. But some of the quirks displayed by those on the spectrum are worthy of note in the Guinness Book of World Records. If you are the parent of a quirk-meister and are idly wondering whether the quirks might be spectrum worthy, I submit the following for you to peruse:
Choosing a Guardian for Your Children
Who will care for your minor children in the event you and your spouse pass away? Have you put you desires in writing?
Many people put off making this decision, as it can be a very difficult decision to make. Firstly, is not a circumstance you even want to think about and secondly, the issues and logistics of deciding who could best care for your children are very complex. While an unpleasant task, I encourage all parents to discuss this and to put their decision in writing. Failure to do so can cause additional family strife and even result in court battles. Or, perhaps everyone will agree on an arrangement but it would absolutely not be what you would have wanted.
In Virginia, you may designate a guardian of your children in your will or in a separate written document. Please be aware that such designation is not a final rule of law. The Courts retain the right to place a child with another party if that is found to be in the child’s best interests. Also, if the other parent survives you, that parent will automatically be the guardian of the child unless it can be shown that would not be in the child’s best interest. While not determinative, your written wishes can be used by a court in determining placement and will often avoid a court contest by making your desires clear to your loved ones.