A support group for Jewish mothers of children of any age with disabilities will hold its inaugural meeting later this month.
In a letter to prospective participants, organizer Joyce Stuehringer, who has an adult son born with a disability, wrote of her hope that in discussing common experiences, “we may ease concerns and fears we hold, and improve the community in which our children live.”
Stuerhinger says more than a dozen women, including one or two grandmothers, already plan to attend the first meeting.
The child’s disability “can be diagnosed or not, and range from cognitive, behavioral, developmental, neurological, emotional, physical or learning issues,” she says. “Whatever a child’s disability may be, we all experience a very similar range of emotions and experiences, and often feel quite isolated. By participating in a group process which is accepting and non-judgmental, feelings of isolation, grief, shame and lack of support can be addressed and alleviated. As we all know, the challenges may change, but they never end.
“I want our group to be a safe, nurturing and confidential setting to express our concerns and experiences as parents,” says Stuehringer. “I believe we can heal, be healers, grow and perhaps create productive pathways, experiences and solutions to the challenges we experience today and those that lie ahead.”
The first meeting will be held Thursday, Feb. 21 at 6 p.m. at the home of Shelley Pozez. A light supper will be served. The discussion will begin at 7 p.m. RSVP by Feb. 14 to [email protected] For more information, call Stuehringer at 299-5920.