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Coping with Grief and Loss

"When you have a child with special needs, grief is going to be an ongoing part of your life. Each parent has to find a coping style. Whether it's your faith, gathering information or leaning on a support group, you have to find a way to regain that a sense of control." Julie Hladio, Family Advisor, Alliance for Infants; parent of a special needs child

"Our grief doesn't fit in with other kinds of grief; it can't be addressed by the usual groups, which are for those whose loved ones have died. A new bereavement group for our region will give parents of special needs children a place to talk and be heard, with the compassion they need."

Kelly Fraasch, founder/director, Parent Resource Network; parent of special needs child "There is a constant unfolding of grief for many families. It gets re-activated at developmental milestones, when your child isn't reaching them. I marvel at the courage and love of parents who are in constant pain; give yourselves credit for your dedication."

Paul Polinko, MSW, Clinical Social Worker, Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh

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