When the first child is born with a disability, though it is devastating for the parents, they and the doctors need to do a thorough investigation to determine the cause. In determining the cause of the disability in the first child, the probability of having a second disabled child can be predicted.
When either of the parents are carrier of a genetic condition that is the cause of the disability in the first child then a second pregnancy may not be advised, though in some cases an IVF (Intravenous Fertilization) may be possible. The doctors would be able to provide a diagnosis and the correct advice in such a case.
If the cause can be managed during the next pregnancy, then the doctors will probably term it as a high risk pregnancy and monitor it more frequently than a normal pregnancy.
Before deciding on the second child however, the parents also need to consider the requirements of the first child. A child with a disability needs more attention, time and financial resources than a child who is normal. The parents should be sure that they are capable of providing the first child all that she or he needs and at the same time they would not be depriving the second child of the love, care and attention that she or he should have.
It is also necessary to prepare the older child for the arrival of the second child. A special needs child will be used to and may need all the attention his mother can provide. With the arrival of the second baby the mother’s time will be divided and this may be a traumatic experience for the older child. It will be necessary to help the first child understand that the mother is still around whenever she or he needs her. The younger child will also have to be sensitized to the fact that the older sibling needs extra attention and care from the parents.
With all the advanced tests and treatments available today, parents whose first child is born with a disability have a far greater chance of having a normal second child.