Shielding a child with disabilities from life experiences is a sensitive subject. Unfortunately, it is one all too often ignored by many well-meaning parents of children with disabilities. While most of them only want what is best for their children and will go to great lengths to do what they must to protect them, they often do not realize that being over-protective can cause just as many problems as it appears to solve.
Naturally, parents want to protect their children. Many parents of special needs children feel that their children may need more protection than if they didn't have such a diagnosis. To many people, this makes sense and in some circumstances it may be true -- but not always.
In an effort to protect their children, some parents will only seek out other disabled children for potential friendships. A recent episode of Parenthood on NBC TV gives viewers the impression that people with disabilities can or should only befriend other people who are disabled.
This may make sense to a lot of people; however, restricting a disabled child's relationships can have devastating effects on his or her personal development and ability to function in the adult world.
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