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Puberty and disability: start the journey

22 May 2024

The pre-and teen years and the onset of puberty are anxious times for many parents. If your child has a disability, there can be added challenges and you may be wondering where to start and how best to prepare yourself and your child for what’s ahead.

It’s important to remember that regardless of disability, pre- and teen-aged children all go through physical and emotional changes differently. It’s a unique journey for each individual. Children with disability, like all children, need to understand their body changes and how to manage them. It’s important to treat puberty as a normal part of growing up.

While your child learns about their changing body, discussing feelings, sexual health, online safety, and consent is increasingly important. It’s not a one-off conversation, but something you need to regularly talk about with your child.

There are some great online resources to help you navigate this stage of your child’s development. They include videos, books, and information in easy English to share with your child and to help you set the tone and pace that suits them.

We’ve put together a list of our favourite resources to start you on your journey:

Useful resources

Also, check out ACD’s free guides Supporting your child with decision making and Your teenager and Medicare and Centrelink

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