Sensory Processing Disorder: It’s A Family Thing


Sensory Processing Disorder: It's A Family ThingIt feels like just yesterday I was writing about how my entire family has ADHD. I thought that was a tough challenge all on its own. I had no idea that just six months later, we would discover that we all also have some form of Sensory Processing Disorder. As if that wasn’t hard enough, we learned that my husband and daughter have a condition called dyspraxia (which is a form of Sensory Processing Disorder).

This realization was an intensely emotional one.

We struggled to process the fact that we have had this condition our entire lives. It hurt me physically when I dwelled on the fact that my daughter has a condition. My stomach rolled and my bones ached. I also felt sadness for my son, who is still so young and dependent on me for everything. It hurts when I think of all the time we spent not knowing about this, with him struggling needlessly. My mind wanders to my childhood, which was so uncomfortable for reasons I could never figure out. I just knew I was a little bit different than everyone else and just chalked it up to my personality. 

The signs of SPD were always there; we just never considered that we did some things in a markedly different way than most people.

For example, I experience severe anxiety most times I go outside. Whether it’s too hot, too cold, or too windy, or there are bugs around, or the grass is too itchy, or the sun is shining too bright, it seems there’s always a reason for me to stay inside. This is just one example of something I never considered before learning more about SPD. Now I share our story in hopes that we might help another family going through the same thing. 

Once again, I am grateful that we are experiencing this as a family.

I think it would be so much harder if only one of us had this condition. We understand each other more and have a connection that is deeper now. I’ve been working hard every day to get my kids the therapies they need and I’m determined to get them all the help that I never got as a child.

I’m thankful for the strides we’ve made in understanding our kids that much more. I hope when they grow up that they know how much we loved them and that we wanted to help them as much as possible.

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Samantha is a stay-at-home mom to Lily and Isaac. She is originally from San Antonio, Texas but moved to Iowa when she started attending the University of Northern Iowa. She has a Bachelor’s degree in English and Special Education, and loves the opportunity to mentor other parents in the special needs community. She enjoys knitting, reading, and baking in her free time.