Whether or not you receive support from immediate family and friends, parenting a child with special needs can often leave parents and caregivers stressed, sad, and angry. As a provider of ABA therapy, we see parents as much as we see their children with autism in the clinic, so we get to know them well. One thing we know for sure is that parents and caregivers need support networks, just like their children!
Here at Blossom Children’s Center, we strive to set parents up for success by hosting parental support groups led by licensed counselors. They are trained to listen to difficulties parents encounter as they raise children with autism. The best part about these support groups? They encourage socialization with other parents just like you, who walk through these struggles every day. They can help support you too, whether this is the very beginning of your journey or if you’ve been at it for years! We can’t say enough about the importance of a strong support network. Let’s take a look at a few reasons why parents of children with autism need to begin establishing a support network today.
Why You Need a Support Network
Raising a child through complicated developmental milestones (or lack thereof) can often make you feel like you’re alone and are the only one dealing with the specific difficulties that arise. However, that’s not the case! Often, you’ll find other parents are going through the same situations, and some may have the insight to share that ends up helping you in the long run! We believe that there are three main reasons or benefits for joining a support network. Let’s take a look.
- Life-long friendships
It seems obvious, and it is. At their very core, support networks lend support to those who feel alone and need it the most. After a few sessions, you’ll soon realize that you aren’t the only one frustrated, sad, mad, or tired. Finding that core group that “gets it” can transform your world, and in turn, by getting the support you need, your children and loved ones will benefit too! Many of these parents are also supporting their children through ABA therapy and can become yet another valued resource if you need more specialized support.
Many well-meaning people in the world will listen to you as you vent and tell you they understand what you’re going through. But the truth is, no one knows unless they are walking the same path as you. That’s why joining a support group with other parents of children with autism is critical! They truly do understand the struggles and can help talk you through solutions that worked in their family so you can try them too. Struggling with some of your ABA therapy work at home? Making friends with fellow clinic parents is a great way to have another line of communication in addition to your child’s therapist. Since they’ve likely been through something similar before, they’ll be happy to help answer quick questions or provide solutions that have worked for them!
3. Life-Long Friendships
You might see the same familiar faces when you come into the clinic with your child for ABA therapy, but you may not know them well enough to stop and get to know one another. However, if you join an autism support network, you’ll have the opportunity to form meaningful, lasting relationships with fellow parents of children with autism that can sustain you through the tough days. At their very core, friendships thrive and blossom thanks to shared commonalities—so it should be a no-brainer that forming friendships within the clinic might be just the support you and your child needs!
Empowering the Whole Family
Here at Blossom Children’s Center, we believe in serving the needs of your entire family, not just children with autism. We do this through ABA therapy that includes parental participation, parental support groups, counseling, and a whole host of other services depending on each family’s specific needs. We want you and your children to feel loved, supported, and empowered when you leave our clinic, but we also want you to find ways to care for yourself as well. We think you’re doing a great job and deserve the very best. Contact us today if there are any counseling services you’d like to learn more about!