Guest Blogger: My mom. Kristina Tindall
Being the parent of an adult child who has ASD, I get asked a lot of questions. Many of them relate to my son when he was much younger, and I truly understand. We want to do our best as parents and we know that how we train our children impacts their future. Having a child with ASD makes things a little more challenging.
One of the questions I get asked a lot is: How did I teach my son how to play with other children?
My son Tyler had an extremely difficult time playing with other children. I don’t know if it was because it was too much stimulus for him, or because he just wasn’t used to being around other children since he grew up as an only child. Hard to say. But I was treading new waters back in the 90’s and there wasn’t a lot of information about ASD so I relied on my motherly instinct and what made sense to me at the time.
Going to the playground with a lot of children was extremely stressful for me. I...
You can learn how to stop the autism food fight and help your child to try new foods. Of course getting your child with autism to try new foods can seem like an impossible task. But you can stop the food fight using a couple of techniques.
Here's how to get your child with autism to try new foods:
The first thing is to realize is that it may be physically impossible for your child with autism to eat certain types of foods. The tastes, textures, and delivery methods may be completely overwhelming to the senses, and create a complete overload resulting in a meltdown.
Food presents a unique challenge for parents of a child with autism, because your child must get adequate nutrition, but they are not able to process the sensory input that food delivers.
Eating is also a very emotional topic based on how you may have been raised as a child. (Must eat everything on your plate syndrome)
Use of supplements that can be "hidden" in the types of food that your child with autism will eat, gives...
Learn how to deal with Autism and build your child's confidence.
Learning how to help your child with autism build confidence is a necessary skill that will help them achieve success as they manage their life with autism.
Persons affected by autism have a high likelihood of lacking self confidence. Protecting their confidence at all cost is essential. Confidence can erode as your child starts to understand expected and unexpected behavior, and they become more self conscious as they get older.
Lack of self confidence can also lead to depression in someone that has autism. This video talks about how to protect and maintain self confidence.
There's a fine line between confidence and arrogance. Used to get those two confused and that made me look like a very bad person. Mom taught me about being humble; I do want to keep my confidence, but never would want to go down towards over confidence. One thing I have learned about humbleness is from many superheroes in...
Learning how to understand the needs of your child with autism is essential for their future success.
A child with autism builds up a tremendous amount of frustration because they are not understood. This frustration is intensified if they are not able to communicate verbally. Alternate methods of communication must be established to reduce or eliminate frustration in your child with autism.
Learning how to interpret patterns of eye movement, gestures, noises, and other physical and auditory cues allows you to begin understanding nonverbal communication. Each child with autism is different, intuition is your best resource.
Spend time looking for the underlying non-verbal communication. Realize that your child with autism is doing his/her very best to communicate with you.
The way things worked at the house was that my parents wouldn't know what I needed. The solution to that was that they tried everything they...
Activities To Avoid When Your Child Has Autism
Learn the top three activities to avoid when your child has autism. Best selling author, speaker Tyler McNamer explains the top activities to avoid for a person with autism.
Children with autism cannot initially handle the same sensory input that nurotypically developing children can.
Things like parties, loud event, crowds, and similar things will overwhelm the senses resulting in a meltdown. It’s important to plan in advance when attending such events, and use discretion before putting your child into a situation that may not turn out well for you or your child.
Exposure for a limited time can be helpful and healthy, as it will start to desensitize you child allowing them to process the sensory input more effectively. Prolonged exposure will agitate your child with autism, resulting in unexpected behavior.
There are no limits. I have always believed that. Reasons why I would recommend activities to avoid is...
Persons with autism tend to be drawn to video and computer screens.
Computers and video can be used as a very effective tool to teach someone with autism how to self regulate. Videos can be used to teach social skills, speech, facial movements, expressions, and many other skills. Animated video and computer programs are more effective than real video.
Look for software that uses primary colors, and is very clear in its presentation of concepts. Computer programs that teach children with autism social situations and formation of words have the greatest long term impact.
I've been interested in computers since I was four. Even built myself one with the help of Dad when I was twelve. One thing about those machines that I enjoy very much is the sounds it would make. I would go up to a machine, put my ear on the side of the computer, and listen to whatever goes on as the computer runs after I turn it on. Could...
You can create a breakthrough in understanding when you learn what a person with autism wants you to understand about autism. Everyone wants to be understood, even more so those with autism.
Autism may seem mysterious and sometimes puzzling, but it can be understood. Learn the top things that someone with autism would like you to know about them, and their world.
Working with Your School to Help your Child with Autism
Your child with autism can be rapidly integrated into a mainstream classroom by working with your school to help your child with autism. You can do this by making sure you have an IEP in place. An Individualized Education Plan documents what services your child will receive when in school.
These services can include para educator support, occupational therapy, speech therapy, modified work plans, communication devices, and many other types of therapies and support systems. Your child will spend many hours at school.
First transition from the house. School! I have had so many great stories relating to school; It was one of the best things that has happened to me. The environment, the teachers, even the kids; Lots of times, I would feel very excited to go to school. There were the...
Many children with autism watch the same video over and over again. The question is: Should you let your child with autism watch the same video over and over again.
The answer is yes! Most likely they are using that part of the video to develop language, or are using it as a “touchstone” to help them handle the sensory input around them.
You can use that repetitive activity as a bridge into other interests. It may seem strange at first, but once you understand the reason that your child with autism watches a video over and over again, you will learn how to use that as a took for their development.
So next time that they are watching the same thing repetitively, sit with them, be interested in what they are doing, and have them show you the specific part of the video they are watching.
Look for faces, mouth movements, and other clues as to why your child might be watching that particular section.
Most likely they are trying to add that specific activity to their world,...
How do you help your child with autism make friends? Friendships and relationships in general are hard for someone that has autism. Many times those with autism have a difficult time “putting themselves in another person’s shoes”.
That analogy alone is difficult for someone with autism to even understand.
Friendships can be formed with a understanding peer group. Those groups can be found in your general community, as part of your church, at school, a formal social skills group, or a wide variety of other places. It does take effort and some trial and error to find a workable solution.
Once you have an understanding peer group you can then start modeling behavior. A person with autism must create thousands of desperate social files, that can eventually be weaved together to form a framework of friendships and relationships.
It takes a lot of time, but it’s well worth it in the end, as your child develops the potential to have lifelong relationships.