You may have read a lot of information about the education of children with autism, but we must also look at other perspectives. Have you ever stopped to think how siblings of children with autism feel? It is common for them to develop a series of feelings that can be difficult to understand from the outside, although parents must be attentive to them.
The relationship between siblings is a very intense and natural bond in which you play, argue, negotiate, give in, have envy, etc. This bond gives rise to a very close relationship between equals and unique characteristics that will guide the little ones throughout their lives. This bond will be a very important source of learning since it will determine your personality, the management of your emotions and the way you relate to others.
That one of the siblings has autism does not have to be something negative, but it is a situation that will influence the dynamics of the family.
Little ones are very affected by everything that happens around their environment. Thus, the siblings of a child with special needs such as autism have feelings that are very difficult to understand by other people. These are:
Not being able to share your feelings with your sibling as equals or the need for more attention from the sibling from their parents can be triggers for emotions such as loneliness or isolation. The environment must be careful that this does not happen.
2. Feelings of guilt
Many children feel that they have some responsibility and guilt for their brother's special need.
The child, as he grows up, 'sees' that his family is not the same as that of others and this is difficult for him.
This feeling is due to the insecurity caused by not understanding why his brother behaves differently from others.
The experience a child may have with a sibling with autism depends on how old they are. The maturational and emotional skills that the child has to cope with this situation are a fundamental condition.
In addition, the environment and the degree of bond between family members and the way in which they communicate will be key to making living with a sibling with autism easy or difficult. Thus, so that coexistence is easier for the child the following points must be taken into account:
The child must understand that his brother is different, but that he is is not bad.
- Be prepared for uncomfortable situations
As you get older you should be prepared to face teasing about your brother. Parents must provide the child with strategies to cope with this type of situation as well as possible.
- Make you participate
There comes a time when the little one must know what autism is. For this, it will be important that they participate in the guidelines and therapies that must be carried out.
- Friendship between siblings
That the brothers play with each other is very important. Both can be enriched from this game, since it strengthens the ties between them and enhances the social relationships of both with others.
Children and siblings alike will be reinforced and rewarded. It will be important to let them know that they are loved equally and that they should not fear for their safety. Children often copy behaviors of their siblings with autism to get attention, so parents must be careful that this does not happen.
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