It means you can’t leave the house because your child doesn’t want to have a change in their routine.
It means meltdowns when you try to put them in a short sleeved t-shirt rather than a long-sleeved one.
It means taking packed lunches everywhere you go as their diet is so restricted.
It means telling you child you love them to be ignored completely, or told ‘ok’.
It means not being able to leave them unattended for any length of time in case they are a danger to themselves or others.
It means having to control this environment and keep noise to a minimum, whilst listening to them talk on very high volume from the moment they wake up until when they finally go to bed.
And they are usually talking about something that is of very little interest to anyone but themselves. Seriously, I feel like my head is going to explode by about 10am.
It means being constantly emotionally drained from being on high alert and basing all you decisions around their wellbeing.
It means feeling selfish when you need some respite.
And it means having to defend your parenting to people who think autism doesn’t really exist and wasn’t around in their day.
It means being stuck at home during the school holidays as your child can’t cope with crowds or the change in routines.
Parenting a child with autism can be a joy and we love them very much but let’s be honest here, sometimes it is really hard and very isolating.