6 Things to NOT Do with an Autistic Child
Parenting an autistic child requires extensive care. It's important to remember that they are not "broken" and should be treated with respect and empathy. You should provide an environment where they can feel safe and accepted and try to understand their individual needs. Moreover, autism is not a "one size fits all" condition.
Different strategies may work towards helping children with autism control their anger. So it's important to know what not to do, such as forcing them into situations that make them uncomfortable, speaking for them, or pushing them too hard academically.
Instead, focus on providing a supportive and understanding environment and engaging in activities that focus on the child's strengths. Read on to learn various mistakes to avoid when caring for a child with autism.
Don't Talk Down to Them
Autistic children may have difficulty understanding verbal communication, so it's important to be respectful and not speak down to them. Try to use simple, clear language instead of talking in circles or using complex words that the child may need help understanding.
It's also important not to use sarcasm or a mocking tone when speaking to an autistic child – this can be hurtful and will only worsen the situation.
Don't Force Them Into Situations They Don't Want to Be In
Many autistic children find social situations uncomfortable. If they're not comfortable participating in traditional activities such as playing games or going out, don't force them to do so against their will.
Let them know that you would like to engage in activities together, but if they're not ready now, that's okay. In fact, some autistic children may enjoy avoiding social situations for a while to focus on their own needs and interests.
New experiences may be scary, but one thing you can do to make it less stressful for your autistic child is use stress relieving wearables. Wearing stress relief wearables like TouchPoints before and during the new experience can help your child feel calmer during the process.
Don't Try Too Much
Autism is a complex condition requiring ongoing treatment and support from parents and professionals. Trying to "fix" or "cure" an autistic child will only frustrate them and lead to further problems within the family. Instead, focus on providing support and guidance so your child can live a productive life as an autistic person should.
Don't Over-schedule Your Autistic Child
Too many activities can become overwhelming for an autistic child. This can lead to meltdowns or even tears due to sensory overload (such as too many loud noises or bright lights).
Try to mix things up and give them some freedom to explore. This will help them feel less overwhelmed and more in control. If an activity is too overwhelming or the child starts to melt down, you can always cancel it and find something else to do.
Additionally, ensure to provide plenty of opportunities for your autistic child to socialize with other children and adults, which will help them develop social skills and communication abilities.
Don't Expect Them To Communicate Like Everyone Else
This is unrealistic and can be quite frustrating for the child. It's important to understand that autistic children speak in their unique way and that their communication style may not always reflect what you expect. Instead, try to provide a listening environment where they feel safe expressing themselves.
Don't Push Them Too Hard Academically
Many autistic children struggle academically due to a lack of social skills and communication abilities. Trying to push them too hard can lead to frustration and failure. Instead, offer encouragement and assistance as needed, but don't put too much pressure on them.
Additionally, do your best not to micro-manage or nitpick their academic performance. Let them know that you're proud of their effort, but don't expect perfection from them.
Looking after a child with autism might seem overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be. By following these tips, you'll be able to provide them with the best possible care and support!
If you still have any questions or comments, feel free to ask us in the comments.