Friends are something that all people need. We are a social species and the need to communicate is what has allowed us to survive and learn from each other. With special needs, friendships can be hard to make and hard to come by.
For the child with special needs, especially with social disabilities like aspergers, friendships can be especially hard to make. Aspergers is the social disorder that is on the autism spectrum, this disorder makes it difficult for a person to understand jokes and sarcasm, being able to see someones emotions would be very difficult, and often words and terms are taken in a very literal sense. Saying something like “it’s raining cats and dogs!” wouldn’t make any sense and you’d be surprised how much of our language is comprised of nonsensical sayings. Honestly even if you were to have professional help with trying to build a bridge through these misunderstandings, the true meaning of what people are trying to say will probably always be a challenge.
But what you can do is get that professional help so that your child has the tools to try and figure out what is being said and what is being expressed. Early intervention is something that I and many persons recommend highly. Also, there are camp programs and fun activities that our kids can do to be more involved with their community and maybe make a friend who is understanding or who is similar to them.
Now, our kids with special needs are not the only ones who need friends. Parents you need friends too! Someone you can talk to with no judgements and who can understand where you’re coming from. There are several support groups for various disorders and any special needs function is chalked full of people who understand and care. One thing I adore about special needs is the community, and it is a big one! They are always waiting with open arms to talk and support and laugh about the crazy stuff.
Lastly, your other kids need some support too. Now-a-days, there are support groups for siblings of special needs kids. I don’t know how good some of these support groups are, it’s a little past my time now; however, it’s a good idea so your child doesn’t feel isolated. Rebellion and stress is something that numerous siblings of special needs kids feel but aren’t always comfortable with showing those feelings because their special needs sibling requires the bulk of the attention. Really finding someone to talk to is the most beneficial thing with every special needs group.
And, of course, I am always more than willing to be there for any of my readers. Thank you 🙂