How to Accept That Your Child is in the Autism Spectrum

When I found out my second son was autistic, I was in shock. Well, I was in denial before that, because I didn't want to see it. Once I realized that yes, it was autism, it definitely took me time to accept it and come to terms with it, but fortunately, I had some wonderful moms of autistic kids who took me under their wings and helped me out, and now I see how amazing my two autistic kiddos are and I wouldn't change them for the world. This following piece is a collaboration between myself and one of my readers, and hopefully it'll help you if you recently found out about your child's diagnosis of autism. 

Realizing that your child is on the autism spectrum can be painful. There are so many dreams that you had about your "perfect little family" and then reality is different and you realize that things will look different than what you'd hoped for. Sometimes people blame themselves, even though autism isn't anyone's fault. There’s no point in assigning blame. Your child needs you. Focus on how you can guide your child while facing developmental problems. Here are some tips to help you accept the situation.

Allow yourself to space to process your feelings

When dreams get dashed, when things go unexpectedly, people have strong feelings, and attempting to deny them won't get rid of them. Allow yourself time and space to process how you are feeling, even if that means shedding some tears. Once you let your feelings out, perhaps together with a therapist, you can then begin to accept this unexpected reality.

Talk to other parents

It helps to connect with parents who have autistic children. They can help you navigate this new terrain as well as your emotions. It would be great to receive information from people who have faced the problem firsthand. They will offer wonderful pieces of advice.

Work with experts

You might feel terrible now because you have no idea how to raise a child with special needs. However, when you start working with experts like those from ParentGood, you will realize there are ways to help. These experts have dealt with this before. They know what it takes to help children with special needs reach their potentials. There are experts in different areas, depending on where your child needs more help.

Read, read, and read some more

So many people are uninformed about what autism really means. Read about the neurodiversity movement. Read about strengths and challenges found in autistic people. Learn how to help your kid with their challenges and help them excel in their strengths. Read what autistic adults share to help learn what your kid needs most, from people who have personal experience.

Don’t see it as a burden

Children on the autism spectrum might have unique needs, but they’re capable of a lot. They just may do it differently than you'd originally expected. If you view your kid as a burden, they will know, and it will negatively affect them. If you do feel this way, please get professional help to learn to accept them as they are, because they need your love and support.

Look at other children with autism

You might feel inspired when you see other children with autism excel. They have reached their goals because of a supportive environment. You can even reach out to parents who helped their children do well. You can do the same if you pay attention to your child’s capabilities. By seeing autistic people's achievements, you can see that autistic people are able to reach wonderful heights just as everyone else can, as long as they have a supportive environment. 

Never compare your children

Each child is a blessing and shouldn't be compared to others. No two autistic kids are exactly alike. While autism means that the kids fit certain criteria, in everyone this expresses differently, and what one kid does, doesn't mean that another will as well. Your child is unique, compared to neurotypical children as well as compared to neurodivergent children. Compare your child only to themselves, celebrate their accomplishments, and support their struggles. Comparing does no one any good.

Yes, sometimes getting a diagnosis of autism in your child can come as a real shock and be scary. But with time you will learn about the fun world of autism and the beauty of your child and you'll be able to help other parents and give support when they learn that their children are autistic as well.

For those of you with autistic kiddos, what helped you accept your children's autism? Any advice to other parents?

Penniless Parenting

Mommy, wife, writer, baker, chef, crafter, sewer, teacher, babysitter, cleaning lady, penny pincher, frugal gal


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  1. I have several friends w children who have some behavioral development issues, and some are diagnosed as ADHD and later on,and it is not that. The parents just assumed it was ADHD and once they went for a proper diagnostic testing process, and it was found to be on Autism Spectrum, in many ways it is a relief of sorts.
    I have told some of these friends, that if your child/ren are diagnosed w anything/something that can be validly applied for to get Social Security Disability benefits and monetary stipends - then to apply because whatever little money one may get as stipend/benefits - they all can help towards paying for their child's treatment until the right educational program is found or set up; or to buy specific items that may help the child at home and in the home setting; trampoline or hammock....

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