By Allen Brown
Raising a child can be a handful on its own, but a child that’s on the autism spectrum comes with its own set of challenges. The good thing is, you are not alone in this, as lots and lots of people raise autistic children with ease, as there are tips and tricks on how to overcome things; but the most important thing you should think about is the love you have for your child. Here are some things to consider when taking care of your autistic child.
Make Time For Them
Like any children, they need to feel wanted and loved at all times, even if you have a lot of other responsibilities and tasks to do, your love for your child should come first above all. Experts at www.autismparentingmagazine.com state that quality time with your child is key in ensuring that they get everything they need. This doesn’t mean only cleaning and cooking for them, but rather taking the time to talk to them, spend time doing activities, and teach them stuff. Even if they are above the age where you need to look out for them every waking moment, you still need to check up on them and make sure that they feel loved and not a burden to you.
Plan a Schedule
The best thing you can do to ensure you and your child spend quality time together is by making a plan of action. Days have a limited number of hours, add your other activities to it and you don’t have lots of time to spend with your child. That’s where a daily or even weekly schedule comes in. In order to get everything done, but also to have fun with your child, you need to plan everything out beforehand, separating work, responsibilities and tasks from playtime. Also, having a strict regime when it’s playtime and when there are responsibilities to focus on will help you cope with everything, and will also teach your child about time management.
Do Fun Activities
Like all children, they need to explore the world and have fun! Doing different activities with your child with autism is a must as not only will they have fun, but so will you. You can incorporate lots of different hobbies and games to play in your weekly schedule and switch them up from time to time – this way you can try out what suits your child the most. Take them outside, meet other parents and kids with autism and make it into a bonding experience, both for you and your child! Thankfully there are lots of useful and educational books, magazines, and blogs that give creative and innovative ideas on how to spend quality time with your child, so you don’t have to stress about it too much.
Don’t Stress Too Much
This can apply for literally everything, but when you are taking care of a child it’s best to look out for yourself too. If you think about all the negatives and all the weight that’s on your shoulders, the stress that’s building up will bring consequences. Those consequences will affect not just you and your general health, but also can make your child feel uneasy. Your child needs to feel like the environment is safe for them, and if they constantly see that their parent is angry or sad, it can deeply affect them. In order to properly function and take care of others, you need to look out for yourself too, always remember that.
Keep It Balanced
Having a child with autism, depending on where on the spectrum they fall, can be very time challenging. You obviously want to spend as much time as you can with them, to provide for their needs and such, but chances are you can’t do everything on your own. If you can, take breaks to do separate things, ask your spouse or family members to help with your child instead. If you are not in that position, you can always find specific services and care-givers to look after your autistic child for the day. This way you can do other things as well, and have enough energy for your child, instead of being drained of it all day.
It’s hard to take care of someone period, but children are particularly needy and require a lot of attention. The same goes for children with special needs. But the bottom line is that a parent will do anything for their child, and all the hard days are worth the struggle if you know that your child is loved and taken care of well. There are lots and lots of parents dealing with the same things as you; talk to them, share tips and experiences, and remember that you are not alone in this!