If you’re the parent of a child with autism, the one word that sticks out in your vocabulary is “routine”. Children with autism produce routines that help them navigate through the colorful situations they may find themselves in. As you’re likely well-apprehensive, abiding by these rituals is important for children with autism and they’re likely to show their vexation if you try to stop them. Social skills groups near Wake can help adjust your child for the new season that comes with new challenges and changes.
Challenges of Winter
A lot of people don’t look forward to the onset of the cold season. It means getting out warm clothes, wearing lots of layers, starting the car and letting it sit, and, oftentimes, changing your schedule. People with autism tend to struggle with these changes a lot because of their need for routine. Just because autism and routines go hand-in-hand doesn’t mean they always do it amicably. Keep in mind that winter is often especially hard for those with autism, so you really need to prioritize helping them transition.
Changes to Clothing
Suddenly, your child has to wear bigger clothes and lots of layers they may not be used to or may not like. When starting to get them to layer up and wear bigger coats, start small. If your child doesn’t like wearing their fleece or other big clothes, see if they can wear them for short periods of time. Then, try to have them wear it for longer and longer. Eventually, they might not mind it so much.
Your child may be used to going outside a lot in the warmer weather and now isn’t able to because of the cold. To keep them from getting too cold outside during the winter, have them play outside for less and less time through the fall so that when winter comes they’re used to being outside less. It can also help to have some fun indoor activities ready for the wintertime.
Tips From Social Skills Groups Near Wake
- Use motivators to help your child acclimate to their new routine.
- Try to take small steps forward when introducing new techniques.
- Introduce step-by-step instructions on how the change is going to work.
As stated, the challenges of winter are often difficult for everyone and especially for people with autism. Changing schedules and clothing is not easy. Thankfully, ShineLight, an autism support group near Wake, can help. We support people with autism and can help them get acclimated to the winter season. Contact ShineLight for additional information about preparing for winter, social skills groups near Wake, and how we can help.