Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Raising a tween who has autism

Now I am a mother of a 12-year-old girl who is on the autism spectrum. She is what some might call high-functioning: She is verbal, can read and write and is starting to progress in many areas. But she also has many challenges to overcome.
Next year she will begin middle school. I cringe thinking about what that will be like for her. And it made me wonder how kids with autism can navigate the strange, new world the tween years. Here are some key things to think about, based on my maternal experience.
Making friends
Having autism can make it more challenging to establish friendships. I’ve seen my daughter struggle for years, but she understands the value of relationships. She wants to have friends—she just doesn’t always know how to go about it, and that breaks my heart.