Only one of our children will wish you 'happy Father's Day today' and I know that is hard.

One of our children has yet to even say 'daddy' at seven years old and that must break your heart.

I cannot take that pain away. I won't even try.

But I need you to know you are a wonderful father this Father's Day.

I need you. I love you. Our children need you. Our children love you.

We appreciate that you gave up your career to become full time carer as the children's needs increased year upon year. 

We appreciate that you have sacrificed time out with your friends and family events to come to hospital appointments and meetings for our children.

We appreciate that you push a wheelchair with our son in everywhere we go and never ever complain despite the fact he gets heavier everyday.

We appreciate every time you get up through the night to check on a sick child or to calm our anxious daughter.

We appreciate the hours you spend on the internet checking out the diagnosis and trying to understand what is happening when we are constantly faced with confusion.

We appreciate you coming to constant hospital appointments when sometimes I become emotional and difficult to soothe and the children are bored and restless.

We appreciate you changing batteries on a baby toy for your son even when the noise it makes gets on your nerves so much.

We appreciate you being there for both children when they can't tell you what is wrong and you find that so hard.

We appreciate you being such a stable and strong presence in our lives when the world is so full of change.

I am sorry our children don't understand Father's Day and you will never be woken on Sunday by their loving arms around you and kisses on your cheek.

I am sorry they will not be running out to the shops to choose you a gift and celebrate you.

It does not mean they don't love you.

When they kick you and bite you I need you to remember it is because they know they can let their upset and frustrations be known to you.

When they push you away remember they just need space and they are not rejecting you.

They love you. They just struggle to show it.

You don't have it easy as a special needs father.

I know there are times you wish you could kick a ball with your son and put your daughter on your shoulders for a walk through the woods. I know you worry about the future. 

I want you to know today more than any other day though that you ARE loved and appreciated. 

Our children cannot say it or even sign it but on behalf of them both Happy Father's Day to you and to all the other special needs fathers. 

You more than deserve your special day!

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