Paste your Google Webmaster Tools verification code here

Building A Relationship With Your ASD and SPD child

 

This month we are focusing on spending at least 5 minutes with your child.  So I thought I would develop a series of posts to help you in building a relationship with your ASD and SPD child.  This post is Part 1.

Numerous parents of children on the spectrum and with sensory processing disorder say to me that they have trouble with developing a relationship with their child because they do not give much feedback or they do not want them to be near them.  I usually ask the question “Do you want them to do something you want to do or are you following your child’s lead?”  Usually it is because we are wanting them to do something we want to do.

Would our child respond to us differently if we follow their lead?

For parents of children who do not give little response or want you to be near them

First, I want to acknowledge the feelings that you might have currently with how your relationship with your child.  Before a child is born we naturally dream about the type of relationship we want to have with our child and sadly for a lot of mums and dads this does not happen.  Over time we can feel discouraged and vulnerable as a parent.

Some children on the spectrum do not like us to be near them but there are definitely many ways that you can be with your child and in time will start to see little things for instance child might look your way, smile.  As an ABA therapist, when we first commence working with a child we simply just be present with the child.  We sit near them but stay at a 45 degree angle, smile at the child and simply be quiet and just watch.  Some children will not like this at the start but we do need to start to build a relationship and by simply sitting there whilst they are enjoying what they are doing, we are acknowledging that we value what they are interested in.

The first task for parents who have this scenario happening, over the next week, I want you to simply sit near the child, do not say anything and have a smile on your face.  You do not have to do it long, especially for those who find their child is resistant to this.  But you need to do it at least once a day.  Over the week write down any changes that you see in your child and feel free to share it here, on the Facebook page or if you want to do it privately do not hesitate to contact me at info@coachingforlifetimechange.com.au.

For Mums and Dads who get some response from their child

For mums and dads who get some response from their child and would like to strengthen their relationship it is important to follow your child’s lead.  In parallel play, children will play beside each other and copy what the other children are doing.  For us parents, we need to do the same with our child.  Once again it is important to be around a 45 degree angle so that you can be in their field of vision.  You need to copy what your child is doing because that is what your child like to do.  It is also one of their strengths and it shows the child that you value their interests.  It could be sitting and looking at a book about dinosaurs, it could be making lines of toys and it can even be flapping.

You might think to yourself hang on there……………………….you are suggesting we flap our hands and that is one behaviour that we are trying to change.  I know it does sound silly.  However, when your child is flapping their hands do they feel safe, accepted and competent?  Yes they do!  By copying your child they are feeling safe because they are doing something that interests them.  They will feel accepted for who they are and they do feel competent.

You do not have to do it long, especially for those who find their child is resistant to this.  But you need to do it at least once a day.  Over the week write down any changes that you see in your child and feel free to share it here, on the Facebook page or if you want to do it privately do not hesitate to contact me at info@coachingforlifetimechange.com.au.

For parents with older children with ASD and SPD

This can be a tough area especially if they are shutting you out.  Even when they are older you still want to have a relationship with your child.  The same principals apply to you.  Find an activity that your child likes to do and share the experience with them.  You still need to follow their lead because we want to foster that they feel safe and valued.  It is important that you do not direct the activity.  Even being in the same room if they are watching a TV show shows your child that their interests are valued.

You do not have to do it long, especially for those who find their child is resistant to this.  But you need to do it at least once a day.  Over the week write down any changes that you see in your child and feel free to share it here, on the Facebook page or if you want to do it privately do not hesitate to contact me at info@coachingforlifetimechange.com.au.

Kindness

Family transformation

 

We are all born helpless.  Without a parent’s kindness we could not survive, much less prosper.  When children grow up in constant fear, with no one to rely on, they suffer their whole lives.  Because the minds of small children are very delicate, their need for kindness is particularly obvious.

Adult human beings need kindness too.  If someone greets me with a nice smile, and expresses a genuinely friendly attitude, I appreciate it very much.  Though I might not know of that person or understand their language, they instantly gladden my heart.  On the other hand, if kindness is lacking, even in someone in my own culture whom I have known for many years, I feel it. Kindness and love, a real sense of brotherhood and sisterhood, these are very precious.  They make community possible and thus are crucial in society.’

(How to Practise – The Way to a Meaning Life by His Holiness the Dalai Lama, p. 4)

How To Transform Your Family Relationships

Presentation1

Parenting is not an easy job and we are always looking for different ways to improve our relationship with each family member. I am not a “perfect” parent and I do not strive to be one as that is an unrealistic expectation.  Nevertheless I am going to keep striving to improve my relationships with each family member because as we already know by continuing to work on our relationships is the key to developing a long, strong family relationship.

I have been thinking quite a lot about my relationship with Grace and Emma and how I want to continually improve it.  I can not change everything in a blink of an eye but I can make changes step by step so that they remain part of my families life.

Recently I noticed that I have a habit of not stopping what I am doing when the children need a cuddle.  I am sure for all mums and dads there is always so much to do around the house etc and this is definitely something that happens in my own household.  Having this awareness has made me realise that stopping what I am doing when the girls ask for a cuddle would be the perfect task 1 for my transformation.

 

Task 1 for my family transformation is to stop whatever I am doing to give the girls a cuddle when they need one. 

What would be your first task to improve your family bond. Take time to really think about it because we want to build a strong family relationship that will be there even through the hard times.

 

 

 

//