The Siblings Bond: Their Role in the Life of an Autistic Child

In particular, siblings play a huge part in each other’s lives. Parents of multiple tots know the heart-warming sight of seeing their little ones playing together harmoniously, or holding one another in a loving embrace.

Their Role in the Life of an Autistic Child

Several methodological issues plague sibling literature. And living with a brother or sister with an autism spectrum disorder adds more significance and unique experiences to that relationship. So, to create a strong bond among siblings of autism, you can nudge them in the right direction by simply addressing a few general issues that we have curated for you.

Understanding Why It’s Really Important

Carolyn Shivers, an assistant professor of human development at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, conducted research and he states that even the sibling of children who are affected by autism struggle with anxiety, depression and social dilemmas. It is certainly safe to say that siblings of those children affected by autism are always in a difficult position. If we try looking it from the parent’s perspective, then having an autistic kid may leave you with limited time for your other children. This can lead to feelings of jealousy and hatred among your children. So, to make them bond together, you should interfere and take the things under control.

Issues to Approach for Autism Siblings

  • They can become jealous of having relatively less attention from parents.
  • They can often feel a bit discouraged as their siblings won’t go out to play along.
  • The feelings of over-possessiveness towards their sibling and anger if others make fun.
  • The feelings of embarrassment by the weird staring of people outside, or by undesired care during family outings.
  • They can also feel the guilt of having negative feelings towards their autistic sibling.
  • Siblings of children affected by autism are more likely to have poor social skills than siblings of children without the condition.

Look for a Deeper Perspective

The importance of siblings is often neglected and clouded by what role the parents play. For parents, a big part of the parenting process is all about making sure sibling relationships stay strong. So remember, people! When you feel like you have too much weight on your shoulders, it can serve as quite a breather to let your children lead the way. Research has shown that siblings can learn basic teaching strategies to engage their brother or sister with autism. These skills include things like making sure they have their sibling’s attention, giving simple instructions, and praising good play.

Shaping Each Other

Kids often react to a lot of things differently than adults. Autism siblings may feel that they are not getting a lot of extra attention. However, being a parent you need to make them understand autism and only then things will start to make sense. It’s very essential to remember that siblings can shape their own personalities through each other. They need to support their autistic sibling to counter the strengths and hurdles altogether.

Final Thoughts

The sibling relationship is a natural practice for autistic children to learn about the world around them. So, the positive benefits of establishing warm and positive sibling relationships may last a lifetime. It is important to remember that while having a sibling with autism or any other disability is a challenge to a child, they need your support to happily endure the experience and play a positive role in your autistic child’s life.

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