Joanna Dreifus's blog

5 Things You Can Say To The Parent Of A Child With Special Needs

As awareness grows regarding a number of disabilities, such as autism and sensory processing disorder, people are talking. Often, they’re talking to the parents who are raising children who struggle with these issues, and they’re offering comments such as, "I don’t know how you do it." 

Although well-intentioned, those comments aren’t always well-received.

Joanna Dreifus

Raised Reform, A Mom Finds Her Kids' Disabilities Give The Lie To Labels

I always assumed I would raise my children as Reform Jews, just as I had been raised. Actually, when I was growing up, I considered our  family "observant Reform."  We went to temple every Shabbat and holiday. My father was president of our congregation; my mother chaired innumerable committees and my sister and I served as youth group presidents. We were proud Jews, but liberal ones. Few people in our synagogue (ourselves included) kept kosher or wore kippot. In college, I was one of the few Hillel regulars who needed to learn the Birkat Hamazon. Some years after college, when my husband and I married, we joined a Reform congregation, fully expecting our own new family to follow a similar path.

Joanna Dreifus
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