Remembering our Autism spectrum disorder ASD Children

April 04, 2019

One of the most important things we must remember about high-functioning ASD (Autism spectrum disorder) children is that they are or have become extremely adept at containing their compulsiveness or learning how to channel it, either in their own way or ways that have been worked on over and over at home, through therapies, and in school.  It’s up to us as parents, teachers, and peers to not lose sight of that and remember their need for routine and structure.

Change is a difficult aspect of life for all of us, but it’s much harder on ASD children no matter where one falls on the spectrum. Sometimes we forget that our high-functioning children still need structure and order because they’ve come so far after years of trial and error, therapies, surviving meltdowns, and learning to suppress the compulsion. We see them as brilliant, well-adapted, or just normal children. They integrate into public schooling, their parents may either divorce or start dating, maybe nothing changes at all, but we often, all of us, lose focus on all of the hard work it took to get to this point. We slowly let the structure we put so much effort into building fall apart, and with it their sense of control and security. Most of the time it doesn’t present itself right away, so when it finally happens again, when our child has a meltdown but we aren’t so used to it anymore, it just seems like misbehaving or acting out. When/if this happens, we must remember and reapply the structure that allowed our children to get to a point that we forgot they needed one.

Our hope for all of our children is that they continue to learn, grow, and eventually integrate into the world on their own terms with their own tools to get through whatever struggles lie ahead. Remembering to do our part and keeping structure and regularity for our high-functioning children for as long as is needed until they have all of their own tools is our obligation to remember and responsibility, not theirs.

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