I am a little nervous to write this because I don’t want to jinx the good thing we have going. I am certainly not going to claim that I am even close to having it all figured out. But, as I drove my daughter with autism to SIX birthday and 5th grade graduation parties on the last week of school, I realized that maybe there are some ideas to share that may help others.
Formula for the Perfect Friendship:
Find someone you have something in common with + smile and look them in the eye + show a little kindness = Lifelong BFF
NOT!!! Wouldn’t it be awesome if there was a simple formula to cultivate friendships?! Too bad friendships are so much more complex. Along with the simple give and take skills, there are expectations, past experiences and so many different personalities to consider. It is so complex that when you try to break it down to teach a child with autism about friendship, it seems almost impossible.
We all know by now that life is not even close to being fair. So, it won’t come as a surprise to you, as the parent of a child with autism, that you are going to have to once again do all the work. But, when you sneak around the corner and hear your child giggling and conversing with another peer, it is worth all the blood, sweat and tears you put into it. Here are 5 ideas that we have found to be helpful in cultivating and keeping my daughter’s friendships. Hopefully, they will work for you too.