Special Ed Mom Survival Guide: How to prevail in the special education process and discover life-long strategies for you and your child by Bonnie Landau

“Your son’s brain function is severely abnormal. I would recommend you begin saving for his group home care as an adult.”

Any mom would be crushed by this dire pessimistic prediction, but Bonnie did not let this UCLA neuropsychologist’s edict determine her son’s fate. Combining relentless determination with research, learning and in-depth discussions with professionals, Bonnie found ways to help him progress from ‘severely abnormal’ to honor roll student.

In the Special Ed Mom Survival Guide, Bonnie leads you through the vital steps necessary to survive as a Special Ed Mom. From learning how to manage the emotional overwhelm, to figuring out how to get the school to say yes, Bonnie presents a roadmap that leads you through this confusing obstacle course. Sharing tried and true methods, Bonnie teaches you to find your own inner compass so you can gain the ability and confidence to make decisions that bring results for your child. Based on personal and professional experience, Bonnie will help you to:

  • Create the Right Mindset
  • Take Care of Yourself
  • Take Care of Your Child
  • Understand the Special Ed Process
  • Take Charge of the Special Ed Process

“If only I had had a guide to help me navigate all the challenges,” Bonnie says. “Then I could have focused more on my child and less on learning how to get help.” Every Special Ed Mom needs this guide to help make the journey easier!

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Bonnie has spent the better part of 25 years as a graphic designer and artist. Always a lover of psychology and the forces that influence behavior, it was a natural transition for her to begin working to resolve her oldest son’s special education challenges. When he was six, a neuropsychologist said he was beyond help, and to plan for his group home care as an adult. Bonnie could not accept that nothing could be done, and she set on a path to find solutions to help her son. He is now an honor student and destined to live a typical life.

Having been through the special ed system as a mom, and now as a advocate and counselor, she saw the need for support for the parents who carry this challenging burden. She has helped parents who struggle with districts who refused services, and she has coached parents in finding ways help their child succeed against the odds. Bonnie knows the fear a mother feels when her child’s future is uncertain, and that is why she chose to shift her life focus into educational consulting. She has a thriving practice as an  educational consultant and advocate for parents who find themselves struggling with the special education journey.

She is the author of Special Ed Mom Survival Guide: How to prevail in the special ed process while discovering life-long strategies for both you and your child. She is also the creator of Grounded for Life: 52 Exercises for Daily Grounding, and co-author of Same Journey, Different Paths: Stories of Auditory Processing Disorder. She has a masters in educational counseling and another in spiritual psychology. Her bachelors degree is in architecture. She lives in Ventura County, California with her husband, two boys and their two furry felines.

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Interview

How would you describe your book in 20 words or less without using the blurb? It is aimed at special needs mom who want ideas and encouragement for helping their child find success in school and in life.

Try to describe your book in one sentence. It is a reference book for every mom who wants to learn how to get the best support and solutions for her child and not be overwhelmed by the process.

If someone else wrote a blurb about your book what would it say? This determined mom turned advocated has created the ultimate resource for helping parents navigate the often-discouraging special education system. Filled with ideas for moral and emotional support for mom, as well as how to look outside the school for solutions, this is a timeless resource that every special needs mom will want on her bookshelf.

Tell us about your new release? This book is everything I learned when I had to fight the schools to get my son support. The primary message is that mom needs to step up and take charge because without her leadership, the schools are not going to do what is necessary to help her child be successful. Getting school support is just a start, but looking for solutions outside of school can often create permanent improvement. My son was 6 when a neuropsychologist told me he would need group home care as an adult. He is now 15, an honor student in high school, totally independent, gifted and destined to live a typical life. I want to help other moms learn how to navigate this system so their children can find the success they deserve.

What’s the hardest part of writing a book? Editing was very difficult for me. My mother, a psychologist and former editor of a psychological journal, did my editing. I thought it was so well structured, but she showed me that I would use too many words, and she would often take 5 words out and replace them with one. It was painful to discuss sentence after sentence, analyzing how it could be structured better.

Did you know the title before you started writing? Yes. The title was the first thing I thought of. The title is the only thing that never changed from start to finish.

What’s the hardest part of writing a book? Editing was very difficult for me. My mother, a psychologist and former editor of a psychological journal, did my editing. I thought it was so well structured, but she showed me that I would use too many words, and she would often take 5 words out and replace them with one. It was painful to discuss sentence after sentence, analyzing how it could be structured better.

Did you know the title before you started writing? Yes. The title was the first thing I thought of. The title is the only thing that never changed from start to finish.

Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest? My latest obsession is Brene Brown, a social worker who has moved into research on shame and vulnerability. I think her books are insightful and can help us all understand how to be the best we can be despite the challenges life has thrown at us. She uses story telling to get her point across. I am currently reading her book Rising Strong, and I find it witty as well inspiring.

If you could write outside your genre what would that be? I have always had a dream of being a romance novelist. I have never attempted one, but I have read many a romance novel, and I have always thought it would be wicked to be known for writing steamy stories.

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