HELP FOR PARENTS OF CHILDREN WITH ASPERGER'S & HIGH-FUNCTIONING AUTISM

Education and Counseling for Individuals Affected by Autism Spectrum Disorders

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A Special Message to Teens on the Autism Spectrum

There is a philosophy among some individuals in the autism community that people on the autism spectrum are living their lives on the “wrong planet.” But, this way of thinking favors a flaw-based focus, which is the exact opposite of what we want to achieve. Each of us has a special purpose on this planet. The universe has a plan for you too, and your job is to get in alignment with this plan. So, be encouraged, you are indeed on the right planet. You belong here. You are in this life for a reason.

As a teenager on the autism spectrum, you have areas of strength and areas of challenge. The good news about Asperger's and High-Functioning Autism is that the individual with this condition possesses many more strengths than weaknesses. As an added bonus, when you capitalize on your strengths, many of your weaknesses become manageable – and some correct themselves by default.

You need to begin to reverse the belief of having to focus your development around overcoming your weaknesses, spending precious energy attempting to try and repair your flaws, while your strengths lie dormant and neglected. Capitalizing on strengths rather than fixing flaws is your greatest asset. I call this having a strengths-based focus.
   
You have things that you are inherently good at. Yet you may be going through your life without truly realizing the things you excel at. Or you may have spent years wasting your valuable time and energy on trying to overcome your weaknesses. This often leads people into attempting to become someone they are not. It leads to a false identity.

Let me make this very clear: you cannot succeed by dealing with weaknesses. Successful people focus on their strengths, they focus on activities and tasks where they can make a positive difference. So for example, if you have the ability to stay "highly focused" on a task for extended periods of time, then put that strength at the center of your character profile. Your key strengths will supply the energy needed to excel within your given profession or hobby.

I'm not saying that you should just ignore your challenges as if they didn't exist. But what I am saying is spend your time and energy building on your strengths. Your flaws will become manageable as you employ a strengths-based focus. Building on strengths is about finding opportunities rather than problems. It's about learning how to move from analysis to action, taking a proactive stance rather than a reactive stance. For example, if one of your "flaws" is impatience and disorganization, yet you are very creative, you can focus your creative energy and direct it to devising a plan whereby you manage your unorganized tendencies by slowing down and thinking about what you are doing.

The bottom line is this: you are a unique individual who carries a host of skills and attributes which have the potential to become powerful tools to self-empowerment. What you focus on will become your reality. So if you focus on fixing flaws, more flaws show up in your life. If, on the other hand, you focus on your strong points, more strong points begin to appear. This is why you must have a strengths-based focus.

Good luck in life!

______________________

Note to parents:

As the years go by, are you seeing your Asperger's or High-Functioning Autistic teen rapidly becoming reduced to a person who is surviving on:
  • Anger
  • Being a mistake
  • Depression
  • Hate
  • Isolation
  • Low self esteem
  • Resentment
  • Sadness
  • Self hate

Have you heard your teenager say things like:
  • “I'm a mistake.”
  • “I'm dumb.”
  • “I'm useless.”
  •  “I hate myself.”
  • “I wish I were dead.”
  • “What is wrong with me?”
  • “Why was I born?”

If so, then alarm bells should be going off. You know changes need to happen! Low self-esteem and behavioral problems go hand-in-hand.

My Aspergers Teen eBook is guaranteed to (a) improve your teen's behavior and self-esteem, and (b) empower parents and assist them in starting to enjoy their amazing special needs teens.

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My child has been rejected by his peers, ridiculed and bullied !!!

Social rejection has devastating effects in many areas of functioning. Because the Aspergers child tends to internalize how others treat him, rejection damages self-esteem and often causes anxiety and depression. As the child feels worse about himself and becomes more anxious and depressed – he performs worse, socially and intellectually. Thus, the best treatment for Aspergers children and teens is, without a doubt, “social skills training.”

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How to Prevent Meltdowns in Aspergers Children

Meltdowns are not a pretty sight. They are somewhat like overblown temper tantrums, but unlike tantrums, meltdowns can last anywhere from ten minutes to over an hour. When it starts, the Asperger's child is totally out-of-control. When it ends, both you and the Asperger’s child are totally exhausted. But... don’t breathe a sigh of relief yet. At the least provocation, for the remainder of that day -- and sometimes into the next - the meltdown can return in full force.

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Parenting Defiant Aspergers Teens

Although Aspergers is at the milder end of the autism spectrum, the challenges parents face when disciplining a teenager with Aspergers are more difficult than they would be with an average teen. Complicated by defiant behavior, the Aspergers teen is at risk for even greater difficulties on multiple levels – unless the parents’ disciplinary techniques are tailored to their child's special needs.

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Aspergers Children “Block-Out” Their Emotions

Parenting children with Aspergers and HFA can be a daunting task. In layman’s terms, Aspergers is a developmental disability that affects the way children develop and understand the world around them, and is directly linked to their senses and sensory processing. This means they often use certain behaviors to block out their emotions or response to pain.

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Older Teens and Young Adult Children With Aspergers Still Living At Home

Your older teenager or young “adult child” isn’t sure what to do, and he is asking you for money every few days. How do you cut the purse strings and teach him to be independent? Parents of teens with Aspergers face many problems that other parents do not. Time is running out for teaching their adolescent how to become an independent adult. As one mother put it, "There's so little time, yet so much left to do."

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Living with an Aspergers Spouse/Partner

Research reveals that the divorce rate for people with Aspergers is around 80%. Why so high!? The answer may be found in how the symptoms of Aspergers affect intimate relationships. People with Aspergers often find it difficult to understand others and express themselves. They may seem to lose interest in people over time, appear aloof, and are often mistaken as self-centered, vain individuals.

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Online Parent Coaching for Parents of Asperger's Children

If you’re the parent of a child with Aspergers or High-Functioning Autism, you know it can be a struggle from time to time. Your child may be experiencing: obsessive routines; problems coping in social situations; intense tantrums and meltdowns; over-sensitivity to sounds, tastes, smells and sights; preoccupation with one subject of interest; and being overwhelmed by even the smallest of changes. The hardest part is you feel like you’ll never actually get to know your child and how he/she views the world.

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