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Perception of Families of Children with Specific Learning Disorder: An Exploratory Study

Parents are the primary caregiver for a child and have a great potential to support and advance their child’s academic success. A strain-free and supportive home environment can positively regulate the learning behavior of a child with specific learning disorders (SLD). Researchers have also advocated about educational treatment of SLD that involved familial contexts and needs.[1] Unfortunately, parents have inadequate knowledge and information of SLD, leading to lack of or delay in recognition of this hidden disorder. They do not realize that there is a need for some immediate action and attribute it to developmental process. Therefore, parents deny learning problems in their children when teachers or others try to point them out.[2] If the child is diagnosed with a disability, parents generally display negative attitude toward the problem, including denial, rejection, and self-blame.[3,4] They get disappointed and display hostility or over-protectiveness toward the child’s problem, failing to make realistic demands from the child.[5] Therefore, repeated failure or poor performance despite continuous efforts and practice can negatively impact parents and predispose them to higher levels of stress, frustration, and dissatisfaction.[6] It may extend to various dimensions, including personal discomfort, financial crises, and lower quality of life.[7,8,9]

Therefore, for an effective remedial training program, it is important to have an in-depth understanding of the parents’ perception and experiences regarding a child with SLD. A holistic management can be planned based on the needs of both children with SLD and their parents. However, there is a paucity of studies in the Indian context that have focused on the experiences of the parents of children with SLD. Hence, the present study was planned to explore the parents’ knowledge of the SLD, their attitude/reactions toward the child’s learning disorder and the impact of child’s condition on them.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6149301/

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