Surviving the Teen Years: 5 Tips for Autism Parents
“I can’t wait until my child hits puberty!”
—No parent ever
If your child is quickly approaching the age of puberty, and you’re scared to death of what’s going to happen and how life will change, you’re far from alone. Adolescence is a trying time for everyone involved. But for people on the spectrum and their families, it can be especially trying.
It’s no wonder why. Puberty is a time of dramatic change—something people on the spectrum struggle with.
Emotions become wild and fluctuate like crazy; people on the spectrum already tend to struggle with emotional regulation and may have a harder time communicating what they’re feeling.
Children go through enormous leaps in growth—which can become a huge challenge for parents whose children tend to engage in aggressive behaviors, as they may be more difficult to handle.
Along with the inherent challenges of puberty, some research suggests that adolescents with autism may newly experience or experience more seizures than they did when they were younger.
While research on pubescent individuals with autism is limited, some experts also believe their behavior can get worse with adolescence due to all the changes and hormonal swings.