Different Dads: Fathers' Stories of Parenting Disabled Children

Different Dads: Fathers' Stories of Parenting Disabled Children

Paperback

Edited by Jill Harrison, Edited by Matthew Henderson, Edited by Rob Leonard, Foreword by David Cameron

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  • Publisher: JESSICA KINGSLEY PUBLISHERS
  • Format: Paperback | 176 pages
  • Dimensions: 154mm x 228mm x 16mm | 281g
  • Publication date: 15 March 2007
  • Publication City/Country: London
  • ISBN 10: 1843104547
  • ISBN 13: 9781843104544
  • Sales rank: 577,759

Product description

Fathers of disabled children can feel overlooked when the focus of much parenting support is aimed at mothers. Different Dads is a collection of inspiring personal testimonies written by fathers of children with a disability who reflect on their own experiences and offer advice to other fathers and families on the challenges of raising a child with a disability. The fathers featured represent a broad spectrum of experience. Their contributions reflect a wide range of cultures; some are single fathers, others are married adoptive fathers. What they all have in common are the challenges that face them and their families in raising a child with a disability. Issues explored include the reactions of family, friends and colleagues, how to deal with the organisations and professionals that support families with a disabled child, and the difficulty of being open about feelings in a culture that doesn't always expect men to have a sensitive or nurturing role. Offering direct and thoughtful perspectives on being a father of a child with a disability, this book will be a valuable source of support and information for families with disabled children, and also for health and social care professionals who work with these families.

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Author information

Jill Harrison is Director of External Affairs at Contact a Family, a UK-wide charity that provides support, advice and information for families with disabled children. She previously managed a Citizens Advice Bureau and a Carers Helpline and is the author of Teach Yourself Caring for Someone at Home. Matthew Henderson has been a Senior Parent Advisor at Contact a Family and has several years experience working with families affected by disability. He currently works with offenders at Holloway prison. Rob Leonard is a PE teacher and father of a disabled child. He is also the author of several journal articles regarding drug education in schools.

Review quote

'This book will offer invaluable insights for anyone concerned with families with a disabled child. The fathers talk movingly about how they responded when they realised their child was disabled - the grief, the sense of loss, the challenges, but above all the enduring love, the sense of pride and connection to their child, and the stories of what they have learnt and gained along the way' This book should give confidence and inspiration to health and social care professionals to engage with fathers'. -- Fatherhood Institute E-newsletter This book is a must read for any parent who has a child with a disability. There is at least one story that families can relate to. Dads may also feel they are not alone, while mums may no realise the father's perspective. It is an easy read although the subject material is sometimes distressing. This is the reality and I believe a greater understanding will be developed. In Summary this book provides an excellent resource and is very informative. As a dad and a professional myself, I can recommend this wholeheartedly. -- GAP Good Autism Practice It is a great idea to draw together stories of fathers' experiences in bringing up disabled children. One of the ways parents manage to cope is to know that others have been through the same experiences. Then you learn that it isn't just about coping - there are positive stories to tell. -- David Cameron, Prime Minister I found this incredibly moving and difficult to read without crying. It is impossible to read in one sitting, but good to dip into, to be reminded of how difficult the position can be. There are 21 stories of dads in different circumstances with disabled children. Some are married, or live with partners. Others are raising children alone. Some are divorced and having trouble keeping contact with their children. The conclusion is very useful, full of helpful hints on how to obtain support and do the right thing for the children. It is difficult, but not impossible to be the father of a child affected by disability...It is a very encouraging work, and well worth reading. -- Families Need Fathers "Us men" do not readily express our feelings and to have a book that expresses men's thoughts and feelings towards their own disabled child was a great opportunity to see whether there are other dads out there who feel like me. The book gives the reader an amazing insight to these 21 very different Dads' lives, each giving an account of their child's disability, their feelings, family background and their child's development. Each account ends with a piece of advice from these dads to other fathers and there are many various offers of advice, but the overwhelming sense of strength and optimism is clear and humbling to read...I certainly could connect and identify with many of these dads and would recommend it to other dads of children with hemiplegia to read because the overriding positive comments do make you reflect on your own well being: John (dad of two-year-old Rhiannon) says, "if able-bodied people had the same determination as disabled folk, then we would all be winners." -- HemiHelp

Table of contents

Foreword by The Right Honourable David Cameron MP. Introduction. Chapter 1: John. Chapter 2: Phil. Chapter 3: Andrew. Chapter 4: Rob. Chapter 5: Kash. Chapter 6: Simon. Chapter 7: Andrew. Chapter 8: Matthew. Chapter 9: Kevin. Chapter 10: Nigel. Chapter 11: Yuri. Chapter 12: Steve. Chapter 13: Jonathon. Chapter 14: Gordon. Chapter 15: Tony. Chapter 16: Paul. Chapter 17: Richard. Chapter 18: Mike. Chapter 19: Edward. Chapter 20: John. Chapter 21: Michael. Conclusion. Glossary of Terms. Index.