Do you start to sweat, break out in a bad case of the nerves, or wake up in the middle of the night when you even think about telling your child he/she has autism?
You are not alone. Many parents try to put off this conversation for as long as they can just because the thought of breaking this kind of news is both scary and painful.
My nephew’s parents avoided the topic for years. In fact, it wasn’t until Noah was in middle school that they finally approached the topic and then it was only after my gentle nudging. I explained to them that Noah is a bright kid and needed to know the facts. He was already telling us that he didn’t have any friends and that he was “a loner”. He had a lot of anger about things including how people responded to him. He needed information to help him sort things out. Telling Noah about his autism was long past due. My sister-in-law wanted to consult Noah’s psychologist first with questions on how they should proceed. With this kind of help and guidance they gave the information to Noah that he needed.
If you are someone who has avoided this topic, take a look at this week’s video. I think you will find some ideas and suggestions that can help you navigate this touchy subject!
Take comfort in knowing that, as a parent, you get to decide when, where, and how you tell your child he/she has autism. You can decide when they are developmentally ready and you can engineer how to communicate this information. My biggest message here is to do it as soon as possible and use every advantage you have, like visuals, examples of other successful people on the spectrum and last but not least the love and support of you, your family and your support team.
Be brave. You can do this and you can do this well.
I would love to hear your stories! Let me know how it goes!
Take care and I’ll see you next time!