Neurodiverse Children have Limited Bandwidths.
What does that mean?
It means that they have little ability to absorb the stress of intense life events, without negative side effects like emotional outbursts, refusal, opposition, and meltdowns.
What can you do to honor your child’s neurodiversity needs?
Give them a break. Seriously, they need you to adjust your expectations of them following a stressful experience until they can recover.
What are huge life stressors for neurodiverse children?
Life. And, life has its ups and downs for everyone. If there is a huge test at school, when there has been an overnight, when you have gone away for self-care, when rejected by a friend, when there is a party or an outing or a field trip or tired or sad or disappointed or someone bumped them in line.
First, your child will likely have huge stress leading up to any event that they know is coming in the form of anticipatory anxiety. Stress.
Then the stress of the event itself pumps high adrenaline and high cortisol throughout the body during the event. The length of the event actually matters, too, because high-stress hormones for prolonged periods are toxic to the body. Stress? Or double stress?
Finally, the aftereffects when you require your child to be “normal,” do “normal” things like their chores, picking up after themselves, helping out, sharing, going to church or weekend activities or usual weekend errands that require patience, waiting, or boredom. Stress.
This last part, dear therapeutic parent, is where you come in.
On the heels of a big blip in stress, you can honor your child’s thin bandwidth for “normal function” by giving recovery time–a break from the usual tasks, more rest, more choices, less activity until their systems re-regulate. “Downtime” is a thing. It will help your child’s stressed brain recover, and spare your ears the sound of yet another outburst of emotion. Win-win.
Sacramento Events at The Attach Place
Two New Services at The Attach Place:
Neuro Developmental Integration Therapy with Teri Gelgood, LMFT. Contact Teri@attachplace.com for more information.
Resilience Skill Building Coaching with Andrea Kersten, B.A./B.S., our Youth Services Coordinator. This is relationship and emotion management coaching. Not therapy, so cheaper. Not therapy, so not a clinician. Not therapy, so way more fun and engaging while learning to be a better friend and family kid.
============= Ongoing Supports for Children and Parents
In-office Adoption Support Group with childcare for a donation or free. Every second Wednesday of the month from 6pm to 7:30pm. All adoptive parents welcome.
Resilience Friendship Skill Building Group for 6 to 8-year-olds with Andrea Kersten, B.A./B.S., Youth Service Coordinator. Only 2 spots open. All Saturdays in March 2020. Contact Andrea@attachplace.com for information.
Check out joining The Love Matters Parenting Society membership for 24/7 365 parenting support from Ce and an incredible group of therapeutic parents. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information. Woot!