Hi! My name is Tiffany! Thanks for visiting my site! Our family is comprised of myself and my amazing teenage son Mason. I was blessed to have had an opportunity to help raise two step-sons (one with Chidlhood Disintegrative Disorder) for 6 years before our family was separated by divorce. Sadly, that 80% divorce rate of special-needs families is a very real statistic and I have learned a lot through the process. Mason and I enjoy going to movies, going to WWE event, camping, listening to music, going on picinics, and playing at the waterpark!
Autism has affected our lives greatly! I have parented 2 boys on opposite ends of the autism spectrum. Like you, I was looking for answers. I wanted real answers from parents that had been in my shoes. I needed to hear how other parents potty trained their six year old or finally got a screeching child to sleep through the night!
I have been blessed with so much support! I have two members of my extended family that are special educators. I couldn't make it without the support of family, friends, and other parents with autistic kids.
Raising two boys on the spectrum was a challenging part of my life. Both boys have very different needs so they have received different services. One is in mainstream high school classes with support services and educational modifications while the other was in a self-contained specialized autism classroom. They are both unique as all children are. (sadly, after the divorce, I have not been allowed to have updates on my step-son or be involved in his life, so my experience ended when my ex-husband removed him from my life in 2011.)
I have learned so much during this autism journey and I really want to share what has worked for me! I want to support and encourage other parents, and help others on their journey as much as I can! Please visit often and leave feedback! Thanks again for visiting! :) Tiffany
Tell your kids you love them every day!
1. Sit down and eat together - even if it is a picnic on the back porch or in the booth at Taco Bueno. Turn the TV off and sit together. The dinner table is also a great place to work on social skills and life skills.
2. Do "special lunches" for your kids - every now and again eat a cafeteria lunch with your child (Westernburger day is my fave!!), or take them a happy meal.
3.LAUGH! Rent a comedy or sit down with your kids and watch Spongebob. Let the kids take turns telling jokes. Give your non-verbal kiddos a tickle or a smile to make them laugh.
4. READ! Read to your kids - anything from Chicka Chicka Boom Boom to articles in the newspaper. When they are reading - sit back while they read to you!
5. Give them Choices - Let everyone write their "vote" for dinner. Pull it out of a hat randomly, or go by majority vote.
6. Give your time - ALL KIDS are different. Let each child get their own "mom" time or "dad" time. Fishing, Guitar Lessons, Swimming, OUTSIDE of "Family Time".
7. Advocate for them - You are your child's NUMBER ONE FAN!!! If YOU don't advocate for your child, no one else will. You don't have to go into an ARD "Guns-a-Blazin'" to advocate for your child, but you can advocate for them just by being their voice and their number one fan!