Michael Boylan is the founder of The Reach For Me Network, the first social media site created specifically for the parents and caregivers of children with special needs. He is the proud father of a son who has physical and cognitive challenges. He writes about his journey from life as a successful, Type A, married, globe-trotting business consultant to life as a Type B single father, homebody, and full-time caregiver, in his book, Reach For Me The Story of My Son Connor. Michael and Connor live in a suburb of Minneapolis.
Michael Boylan answers your questions below:
My 55-years-young sister has a 6-year-old granddaughter with special needs. She is caring for her mom with Alzheimers and her brother with uncontrolled diabetes. I’m very concerned about her caring for herself. Any suggestions?
YES––Get the book for her right away. I mean that sincerely, because as she reads it, she will see that she is not alone, but part of a community that is 35 MILLION parents caring for their special needs children. She will read story after story in the book that will make her smile, cry, feel embraced, and comforted.
She is on a journey with millions of other caregivers, and that that step-by-step process in the book is a road map that she can follow to handle the really tough stuff as it comes up, with more power, peace, and a process to cut the stress, the anxiety, the doubt, etc. It is an outstanding and heartfelt guidepost for caregivers to follow to help them in their daily routine.
Second, have her join www.ReachForMeNetwork.com for free, then she can download the Angel Child song and music video if she wishes for FREE. It will be a comfort to her. She can also click on the Reach For Me Book on the website, scroll down and listen to the caregiver video testimonials about the book to show her what other caregivers gained from the book. Hope this is helpful for her.
As a 55-year-old single parent of a 31-year-old daughter with cerebral palsy, my biggest fear is my health. Who will take care of her after I’m gone? Are there programs out there that will help with financial assistance for special needs kids and adults?
I am right there with you with your concern, as I am a 57-year-old single father of an 18-year-old son with special needs and have the same concerns you state. I am not aware of any direct organization that offers outright financial assistance for caregivers of special needs children like us, the 35 million of us out there, which is why we are building the Reach For Me Network.
The goal is to get one million of us signed up, so please spread the word. Once we have at least a million on the network, we will begin to negotiate deals with various companies such as life insurance, health care, drug companies, so that we SAVE OURSELVES LOTS OF MONEY VIA THE POWER OF LEVERAGE.
Secondly, I would look into some term life insurance that will cover your daughter when you are no longer able to care for her. Typically, caregivers should have 2-3 times the amount of life insurance to care for our special needs children upon our passing. I hope that this helps.
What can people do to help caretakers?
AGAIN ––Get the book to them right away. I mean that sincerely, because as they read it, they will see that they are not alone, but part of a community.
2. HAPPY CHILDREN=QUALITY PARENTING. We don't always see eye to eye on everything and that's normal. We're human beings. But we come together and do it right for what's important, the kids. We are not enemies, we are parents. And we are parents 1st. S/O to @monyettashaw for making Mason's bday memorable. S/O to @itscrystalsmith at home taking care of our other lil' Prince. ❤️❤️❤️ THIS IS WHAT CO-PARENTING LOOKS LIKE. #Blessed #Happy #AboveTheDrama #BiggerThanUs
2 of 31
3. So happy to finally be able to share with you all that I’m the new Global Brand Ambassador for @Revlon! Follow my day on RevlonSnaps. Yay! Choose Love, Everybody! #RevlonXCiara #chooselove #ad
7. Today was not easy..but by the grace of God we all got through it. Words cannot express our gratitude for all of your Prayers, Positive thoughts and Support for us throughout the years. Tommy will be missed but most certainly never forgotten...And PLEASE don't ask "Where's Martin?.." he was there too...just not in this picture. Lol! God bless you all.. #LoveConquersAll #MartinShow
7 of 31
8 of 31
9. West coast get ready for #RockyHorror. I will be live tweeting again. #letsdothetimewarpagain
9 of 31
10. #THEKEYS pre order yours now ... Available everywhere #NOV22 #WeTheBest 🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑
10 of 31
11. We about to ROCK at #KCABlackBall!! All for our life-changing effort to end 🌎 AIDS.
11 of 31
12. Today's #SNAPJACK is brought to you by @yazzthegreatest 😂😂😂💋💋💋
12 of 31
13. Damn girl you kinda old to be headed to the Go Go. You coming in at the age they leaving. LMAO
13 of 31
14. Daddy daycare B-Boxin with @acewellstucker @shopraisingace
14 of 31
15. #FBF Naviyd & URV "LIL MONSTERS"
15 of 31
16. HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ONE OF THE BIGGEST LEGENDS IN OUR HIPHOP HISTORY! @snoopdogg CONTINUED BLESSING AND LOVE FAMILY!!!!! REAL OG!
16 of 31
17. Thank you for a beautiful night VSU! Let's do it again! #HOMECOMING
17 of 31
18. Had a great time this morning with my familia Erica, Griff & Truth!!
18 of 31
19. Check out my interview on @essence facebook live. #inmyownwords #nycpromo #day2
22. Why me and @coryhardrict got the same pose... and notee... new mouth #naked
22 of 31
23. When my husband is my personal 'hype-man'! it kills me every time! 💜😂 #WHATNOW #lostfiles📷
23 of 31
24. Diggy Simmons
24 of 31
25. Hand full of @jacquieaiche 💙💎💍 @esnail_la 💅🏾
25 of 31
26. SuperSoulers! You can watch my interview with Carl Lentz live from my Facebook page, tomorrow at 11a ET| 8a PT. #SuperSoulSunday
26 of 31
27. 💋 .. When the friendship is easy like Sunday morning. ☀️
27 of 31
28. Sunday mornings are the best........... hugs and cuddles with my angel
28 of 31
29. #huggar16 #hellohuggars
29 of 31
30. My gym is everywhere!.. #RnBMoney #TheGeneral 📸: @twelvepastseven
30 of 31
31. Nothing I would rather be doing... Rocko setting up our movie, Romelō working on a puzzle & Laiyah singing and sharing all she's learning at school... I'm so grateful for the joy they've brought into my life ... Praying for peace , joy & love in the home of EVERY family ♥️ #HeadScarfPJSunday LOL 😂
31 of 31
Continue reading Get Well Wednesday: What Caretakers And Parents Of Special Needs Children Should Know