Down Syndrome South Afica









Guide for Siblings


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You have probably just heard that your sister or brother has been born and has Down Syndrome and you could be feeling very confused right now and are not too sure what is going on or what Down Syndrome really is. Your Mom and Dad may be feeling a little sad from the news, but that is okay. You too may be feeling a little sad and you should allow yourself to cry if you feel you want to. The name DOWN SYNDROME comes from the person who first identified people who all had Down syndrome. In 1866 he recognised that some people had the same features (all looked very much alike) and acted in the same way. He saw that they were a lot slower than other people and that they could not quite manage to do everything on their own and needed some help. His name was Doctor Langdon DOWN, and that is where the name Down syndrome comes from. Having Down syndrome means that your brother or sister will be a bit slower than you at doing things. He or She may start walking and talking later than what you did. Developing at a slower rate is not such a bad thing, and he or she may need some help from you. Your parents will surely be happy that you play and help with the new baby. You should tell your friends and teachers about your brother or sister and what Down syndrome is. You will see that in time your brother or sister will be loved by the whole family just like they love you and will enjoy the baby. The new baby will bring you all a lot of joy. Just treat him or her like you would any other family member - with love.