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“Where there is charity and wisdom, there is neither fear nor ignorance.”

NADS Recommendations & Guidelines for Nursing Staff

At the time of Diagnosis:

Mother's have used the words and phrases such as, "blindsided, devastated and rug pulled out from underneath me." Some say it feels that time has stopped. Many mothers report that after hearing the initial diagnoses they can no longer absorb the words of their health care provider. Many have reported that the line before and after is indelibly drawn in their memory. Learning that your baby has Down syndrome is not an easy thing for anyone to face, and the mother and father may be experiencing a roller coaster of emotions. While everyone handles the diagnoses in their own way, certain reactions are common in new parents of a child with a disability. For the majority of parents, the period immediately following the diagnoses is filled with uncertainty and doubt. For parents who did not know they were having a child with Down syndrome to parents who knew they were at a higher risk of hanging a child with DS, acceptance can be difficult or, at first, seem impossible.

We encourage all medical professionals to become familiar with the below recommendations prior to speaking to a new family:

The National Association for Down Syndrome (NADS) provides support services to families in the Chicago metropolitan area. NADS' Parent Support Program is very helpful to physicians in guiding parents through the first several months when they become aware that their child has Down syndrome. Parents who have experienced the same problems can help new parents deal with them from a position of real knowledge, having been there themselves. All parent support volunteers are mothers and fathers who also have had a child with Down syndrome.

Parents will never forget their birth experience, and even though it is a challenging and difficult time, they will always remember your kindness, concern and support- Thank you Nursing Staff- for all that you do for our families.