Children with special needs enjoy the holidays just as much as any other child, but the idea of holidays may be less fraught than the reality. To help your child manage the holiday season and make it memorable and merry, keep the following tips in mind:
- Understand what your child can handle. Sensory stress such as loud music, bright colors, and strong smells may overwhelm them or they may only want to attend a party or event for a short time.
- Establish a routine for your child that will keep them calm and free from scary, unexpected events. Adhere to their usual bedtimes and let them know what to expect ahead of time.
- Communicate with family members about your child and their needs. You do not need to dictate how they should plan their party or get-together, but let them know about any dietary concerns, fears, or behavioral issues your child may face.
- Ensure your other children can partake in the holiday events they enjoy even if your special needs child needs to take a break. Enlist a sitter or family member to step in if necessary, whether they watch your child or take others to activities.
- Take advantage of special needs holiday events in your community that the whole family can enjoy. These events feature all the elements that make the holiday season joyful including visits to Santa without the lines or crowds.
- Most of all, relax, and realize that no holiday is perfect, and sometimes, the imperfect or crazy moments become memorable ones. Remember, too, to give yourself a well-deserved break, so that you can enjoy the holidays, too.
We understand the challenges you may encounter as a parent of a special needs child and will provide legal counsel on family law issues, special needs trusts or guardianship. For further assistance on these matters and more, contact our New Jersey family law lawyers at Lyons & Associates, P.C. at 908-575-9777 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation. We serve clients throughout New Jersey, including Somerville, Somerset, Woodbridge, Morristown, Parsippany, Rockaway, Short Hills, Chatham, Randolph, Madison, and Morris Plains.