FASD and the Family

FASD presents complex and dynamic challenges for families. Sometimes these are hard to manage or treat. It is not uncommon for some people to misunderstand the unique problems that children and families who live with these challenges encounter.

The thing I’m learning most from the stories told of families living with a child with an FASD is there is a lot of unpredictability. We will face situations we did not expect and have to figure out what to do. I call it the ‘eggshell effect’ (as in I’m always feeling a little like I’m walking on them!)…”

—Mother of son with FASD.

According to the FASD United, “Children diagnosed with FAS or those affected by FASD often come from unstable families and may be at greater risk for physical abuse, sexual abuse and neglect. Perhaps as many as 85 percent of children with FAS are being raised not by their birth parents, but by grandparents or other relatives, foster parents or adoptive parents. Many of these children have life-long learning and behavioral problems caused by organic brain damage. This is extremely stressful and can be overwhelming for any parent or caregiver. These children may require a range of specialized social, educational and legal services in addition to medical services in neurology or other specialties.”

This section provides information and links to several of the issues faced by families and caregivers who love one or more persons affected by FASD. Click a topic below to review it.