The experience of raising a child with special needs may not be what you expected. Your hopes and dreams for your child may have taken a different path.

You are not alone, even though at times you may feel that way. There are large networks of parents raising children with special needs. They use different ways to share information and support each other - talking to each other on the phone, writing email, and going to parent groups are just a few ways.

One good place to start is by contacting Massachusetts Family TIES (Together In Enhancing Support). Family TIES is a statewide information, referral, and parent support network for families of children with disabilities or chronic illnesses. Family TIES offers:

  • Parent-to-Parent Matches - A program that matches a parent to another parent whose child has a similar diagnosis.
  • Support Group Information - Listings and contact information for general and disability-specific support group meetings in your local area.
  • Information and Resources - A Parent Coordinator can provide up-to-date information, services, and resources. Many of these are also listed in the Family TIES Resource Directory.

Contact Family TIES at 800-905-TIES (8437) or 617-624-5992 (TTY). A Parent Coordinator can help connect you to other parents and supports.

There are many other places to find support and resources. Look on the next page ( Resources For Parents and Families ) to find a list of resources for parents in Massachusetts. Also, check the Family TIES Resource Directory.

Tip: Check to see if your child's hospital has a family center, parent group, or parent advisory committee to join and meet other parents.


This information is provided by the Division of Perinatal, Early Childhood, and Special Health Needs within the Department of Public Health.