For someone on the Autism spectrum, it can be quite overwhelming and bring about new stresses that can take the fun out of the event. When someone you love has an ASD, you can help relieve the stress by helping them to prepare for the event ahead of time. Here are a few tips for you to use this holiday season to help your family members enjoy this time of year.
Before the Big Day
There are several steps you can take before the big family gathering to help your child or family member on the spectrum. Start by practicing how everyone will sit at the table with the different music going, dishes on the table, and even how the lights will be set up. Try cooking up some holiday dishes beforehand so you can determine which ones work best for your child. Consider your traditions as a family and the spectrum disorder your child has. If there are some that would cause them issues, then maybe consider having an alternative activity they will enjoy.
On The Big Day
Remember to keep your child’s favorite snack food items on-hand, whether you’re at home or at someone else’s home. This will help to ensure they will eat something and have some comfort as well. Remind your child of the things that will take place such as “first this happens, then this happens”. This will help them to have a sense of calm about them. Don’t forget to reward their positive behaviors throughout the event. Always be aware of your child’s sensory issues and keep an eye on them to ensure they are not getting too overwhelmed.
By taking these few things into consideration, your family member with ASD can enjoy the holidays, and so can you. Take it slowly and try to prepare them as much as possible ahead of time.