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Helping Yourself & Others

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Helping Yourself & Others

Social networks and support are essential to our well-being.

What happens to a sense of community, though, when you’re caring for an autistic child who’s acting out in public? How do you maintain relationships when, by definition, being on the spectrum means social interactions are confusing and hard? Read on for more about how caregivers and people living with ASDs cope and find supportive networks.

Support for caregivers

Families and caregivers need support as they deal with the daily challenge of teaching and caring for a loved one on the spectrum.

Parents need respite from caregiving; they need resources and education to help them and their child; and they need to know that others understand. Neurotypical siblings can be powerful advocates for their brothers and sisters on the spectrum. They also need attention and support.

Connections for adults on the spectrum

Teenagers and adults with Asperger’s syndrome are expressive and articulate, do well in school, graduate from college, hold down jobs, and start families. And for their whole lives, social interactions won’t come as easily to them as to most neurotypicals. It can be a relief to connect with other “Aspies,” as they typically refer to themselves. Connecting with others is easier than ever thanks to social media. An Asperger’s group on Facebook has thousands of members, and it’s easy to search and find people on the spectrum who have blogs.

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