Start transitioning your child as soon as you can. Without a doubt, the holidays can over-stimulate neurotypicals and even more so with individuals on the spectrum. Holidays mean a long break from school. No quizzes and exams to burn the midnight oil for, no class recitation, assignments and stage performances. They get to see their family and friends - and sleep or romp all they want with nary a care about tomorrow. All these things can make transitioning from the holidays back to a regular routine more stressful and taxing to adults, teens and especially for those with autism.
Parents are natural advocates for their children. We love our children, and we want the best for them. As a mother of four children, three with special-needs, I know how important it is to advocate for my kids. There is no one who will be more committed to making sure my children have access to the support, treatment and education they are guaranteed more than I am.
Physical wellness in children is an issue for our times. Decreasing amounts of time spent in physical activities, increasing amounts of time spent on electronic activities coupled with poor dietary habits has contributed to the explosion of obesity in school-age children. Unaddressed, these children will grow up to reap the rewards of their sedentary lifestyles: heart disease, diabetes, decreased life span. Scarier than anything is the growing body of data suggesting that our children’s life expectancy will be shorter than that of their parents.
We knew early on that my older daughter would be visually impaired, and I was concerned how this would affect her socially. I remember confiding in her vision teacher when she was still an infant, “I just don’t want anyone to be mean to her, to make her feel less than or alone.” “Kids don’t see differences like adults do,” she assured me. “They just want to play.”
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