Raising Good Fathers of Children with Special Needs

I (Chee Meng) attended a talk-cum-dialogue session by Dr Daniel Fung at Faith Methodist Church on 7 March 2011. It was very informative and helpful.

He suggested 10 points on what the parents can do:

1. Focus on Moral Development

2. Take Care of Yourself and Your Spouse

– keep a healthy marriage

3. Focus on Strengths

– understand your child

4. Love Your Child Unconditionally

5. Have Realistic Expectations

6. There’s good and bad stress

– balance our expectations

7. Don’t Pamper Your Child

– should not give in all the time

8. Attend to Your Child’s Needs

9. Guide your Child

10. Discipline Your Child

– to increase desirable behaviours, use rewards

– to decrease undesirable behaviours, use punishment (not rewards)

– there’s a place for the use of the rod

• Whoever spares the rod hates their children, but the one who loves their children is
careful to discipline them. Proverbs 13.24

• disciplinary caning vs abusive caning – consider age, site, severity, method, purpose, preconditions

11. Have Balance in Your Life

I learnt that:

1. The pointers for fathers with typical children is the same as fathers with special needs children, especially in the area of discipline. Which means that the role of the father is the same (and of great importance) regardless of whether he has typical or special needs children.

2. It’s more constructive to focus on the child’s abilities rather than his disabilities.

3. A father can help his child fulfill his potential.

You can find out more about Dr Daniel Fung here Academic Profile of Dr Daniel Fung

P.S. Check out this article regarding fatherhood that Apple came across  What Robs Men of Courage?

Other Helpful Information

  1. Dad’s Ministry – Setting up a Support Group for Dads with Special Needs Kids
  • If you would like to consider meeting up with other Dads of Special Needs Kids for support and prayer, please email Kevin Brunk at
  • Kevin is a member of the Dads’ Ministry Committee
  1. SunJAM – G.E.M. (“God Enables Me”) Ministry for Special Needs Kids
  • Sundays, 10am at Lecture 3 of Anglo-Chinese Junior College(ACJC), 25 Dover Close East, Singapore 139745
  • The programme is led by a church staff and run by church members
  • Parents can attend the 10am Celebration Service at the adjacent ACJC Centre for Performing Arts

1 thought on “Raising Good Fathers of Children with Special Needs”

  1. Hi! Bro,

    Thanks for sharing.

    I have learnt that there is something “deeper” than our outward behavior towards our children and, just like adults, children can sense the sincerity or meaning behind others’ behaviour towards them. Similar to the times when you received an apology or compliment from a colleague or friend or superior but sensed that they didn’t mean it, your child can also sense the meaning behind your actions. Thus, if you punish your child for the right reasons (i.e. it being in his or her self-interest and not yours), your child will sense this.

    Do check out the following link for an article I contributed to Yahoo! Associated Contents.


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