07 Sep Manipulating the System
Your child is smart. I know that communication is probably difficult for him, and because of this you might feel that you should give him everything he asks for. If you don’t feel this way, I imagine that you have family members that give into his requests probably more often than they should.
Your sweet child picks up on little subtleties, and he has probably learned how to push the limits. Autism doesn’t mean that your child can’t “manipulate the system,” Also known as, he probably knows how to get what he wants…most of the time.
Here’s what I mean. Your child has most-likely figured out that if he wants something, all he needs to do is behave a certain way with a specific person. Even if he is non-verbal, he can still figure out these tricks of the trade.
Of course, there are many children who face daily difficulties communicating their wants and needs. I am by no way implying that if your child is trying to get his needs met by asking different people in your home for help, that he is manipulating you.
Consistency is of upmost importance when raising a child, especially a child with autism. I encourage you to get everyone in your home and in your family on the same page.
If you create a rule for your child, make sure everyone is aware of that rule. For example, if you have decided that you do not want your child to eat sugar anymore, make sure that both parents are on the same page. Share this important info with the grandparents, and even your child’s teacher.
If your team is not working together, your child will quickly learn who he needs to “talk to” to get what he wants. This can lead to stronger meltdowns, bigger tantrums, and exhausted parents.
Do you have challenges getting everyone on the same page in your home? Please share with us below.