Autism is said to be one of the most common child development disorders. Interestingly the pressure of dealing with autism are considered so high that a large percentage of marriages involving an autistic child end in a divorce. This is the reason why in many cases mothers find themselves caring for autistic children single handed. This can get to be a daunting task but is by no means impossible.
Some tips below to help single moms look after their autistic children with greater ease:
- Find professional centers – Depending on where the child is placed on the spectrum, you will have to find a center where the child can follow an academic line and also learn certain behavioral techniques. Mothers looking after an autistic kid single handedly will find that even though they may have to put in a lot more effort initially into taking their autistic child to these centers, in the long run both the mother and the child will benefit tremendously from the exercises taught here.
- Follow set schedules – As far as possible you should follow a set timetable for the entire day. Children suffering from autism do not take kindly to sudden changes and will always be more relaxed in a routine where they know what to expect. So keep the drills as familiar as possible in order to avoid a tantrum. The child should know what to expect through the day and incase there is going to be a change in the daily sequence of events, do let the kid know of it ASAP. So if you go to school every week but due to a holiday will not be going on a particular day, do report it to your kid and also keep reminding gently so that the child knows what to expect.
- Learn to deal with tantrums – There are ways and methods to dealing with the tantrum episodes that your autistic kid may suffer. As a single mom it is important that you learn to deal with them so as to reduce the length of the tantrum. In most cases attending classes where care givers of autistic kids are trained will benefit, but you will also need to find your child’s personal factors. Some children will respond well to small pieces of candy while others may do better with a toy as a reward. The basic idea being learning how to control the tantrums and reward the child for good behavior.
- Always focus on the larger picture – When raising an autistic child there are bound to be times when you will be ready to pull your hair out. The trick here is to focus on the larger picture. Do not get embarrassed if you kid throws a tantrum in a public place. Forget the people and focus on the child instead. Make sure the battles that you pick with the kid are big enough to matter and let him win at all the others.
In most cases with time autistic babies also settle down to a routine. While things are bound to be more difficult initially, always remember over time it will settle down.