Living with dystonia Children and dystonia Dystonia and your family Incorporating dystonia into family life can initially cause confusion and insecurity, but many families find that through mutual support they are brought closer together. Encourage your child to accept that the dystonia does not own them; it is not their identity, merely a part of their life. Be positive and supportive, but also be aware that being overly-protective may not help them. Part of growing up is learning what you are capable of doing, and this is no different for a child with dystonia. In your desire to help your child, it is important not to neglect your own needs and those of the rest of the family. Finding ways to have time-out is vital - having someone to talk to can also be invaluable. It can take time to accept that your child has a disability. Some parents and carers describe it as going through a grieving process, including the recognised stages of denial, anger and depression, arriving finally at acceptance. You are bound to experience a wide range of emotions and, if you or your family find it hard to cope with this process, it is important to seek help through your GP.