Cheers or Tears

Christmas Cheers or Festive Tears?

With Christmas fast approaching, you will no doubt be in one of two camps. Are you a Christmas cheer kind of person and start planning in September or a Christmas tears one and dread the thought?

Having ASC is not conducive to having a great time at Christmas unless the festive break is very well planned.

"It is 7 am, I should be up”
“Go back to bed you aren’t at school today”
“It is 7.30 I need to get dressed”
“Not today you can stay in your pyjamas until brunch”
“I need my breakfast it is 7.45”
“Today we aren’t having breakfast, we are having brunch at 10 instead”

Not having enough time to process all these changes, one after the other, may result in your Christmas being more tears than cheers. Chaotic and confusing spring to mind.

There are some really quick and simple things you can do, to help make the season a pleasurable time for all.

• Have a written schedule and share it with your child as early as possible. Put it in a place it can be seen and read, and re-read.
• Decorate the house a bit at a time and be aware of any anxieties extra lights may cause.
• Talk to any families you may be visiting and discuss any ‘triggers’ that may arise during the visit.
• Prep as much as you can before the big day, this will allow you time to be with your family and de-escalate quickly if required. After all, spending time together will be more memorable than a great Christmas dinner.
• Make time in the schedule to go outside for some fresh air.

There is plenty of help and advice online if you can manage to find 10 minutes to take a look. If you are tight on time here are a few websites worth a look. 16 Tips for Enjoying the Holidays With an Autistic Child

Most of all don’t break yourself by trying to create the perfect family Christmas, after all, what is the perfect Christmas? Mine is just spending time at home with my family and a big walk after our BBQ. Christmas dinner is so overrated in my opinion and spending hours prepping is not what I enjoy, so BBQ it is.