How You Could Help a Child with Autism at Halloween
Halloween is different for an autism family. It’s different every year because you never know how they will feel about Halloween this year. For example, they might want to dress up one year and go out trick or treating but the next year it might be completely opposite. It can be a very stressful holiday at times but we all do our best to stay calm and make it enjoyable.
I feel that if a household knew that a child with autism would be coming to their house to trick or treat things would be a lot calmer for everyone. I decided I would share with you some of the things I think would help.
- Don’t expect them to say trick or treat – Some autism individuals take everything very literal and telling them to say trick or treat might be confusing for them so if they just knock on your door and say nothing then just go along with it.
- If they grab sweets, it’s not that they’re greedy – Some children with autism struggle with motor skills. Such things as holding a pencil or picking something up can be very difficult for them to do. If they grab sweets from you this may be the reason why.
- If they don’t make eye contact with you it’s not that they’re ignoring you – Children with autism can struggle with eye contact but that doesn’t mean they’re not listening to you. If they say thank you but not directly at you it doesn’t mean they don’t care they just might not see the purpose in making eye contact with you.
- Simple sentences and questions will help hugely – If you’d like to ask them what their dressed up as or what sweet they’d like, don’t rush your sentence or make it too long. Even giving them an option of 2 sweets to choose from would be a great idea. If you can tell who they are for Halloween then mention it so instead of saying “what are you for Halloween?” say “are you Batman?” The more simple the question the better.
I hope that these tips can help you and an autism family at Halloween. It’s so important to make them feel involved.