Adolescence is a decisive stage full of turbulent moments due to the physical and psychological changes young people experience. For this reason, the development of self-esteem and self-identity is extremely important for achieving greater confidence and feeling comfortable in this modern society.
Being different is what makes us special
Explain to your children in a casual conversation that all people are different, and that is what makes each of us unique and unrepeatable. Every human being is valuable and interesting for their peculiarities.
Help them see themselves as a valued and active part of society. You can also help them understand that people around can see, talk, think, and act in many ways.
Tell them that people are free to think and act differently, and we must accept it.
Kids within the autism spectrum may feel different from others at school because, in many cases, their classmates make them feel that way. Tell your child that no one in the world is completely equal to another and that he or she should not pay attention to others’ mean comments.
Getting to know others
Allow your children to join activities that they like, such as a sports club, a painting group, or a band. This will allow them to realize each of their strengths, discover what they like to do, and find a place where they feel safe.
This way, they will develop social skills by sharing with others who aren’t within the spectrum. In turn, it will be a great practice to start interacting with all kinds of people.
But promote activities in which they can share with other children with autism as well. Getting involved with people within the spectrum can help them understand more about their condition and the different ways in which it can affect people.
Sharing experiences with an audience that understands their situation is also helpful. The State Autism Association and the local council may recommend some local groups. These agencies are responsible for providing information on the places where children can meet others of the same age and condition.
Thinking about me
Encourage your children to explore their interests and discover what they love and what they don’t. Talk about the positive aspects of their personalities, for example, their good manners, generosity, solidarity, tolerance, among others. Also, ask them how they would describe themselves.
An effective strategy for kids to express what they think about themselves is teaching them how to write a journal. You could call it “All about me” and include photos of all the activities your children like and entries about their achievements.
Teens within the autism spectrum remember past events better through images, photos, and other documents. For example, school reports can help them remember their triumphs at school.
Knowing about the family
To help your children develop their self-identity, you should show them photographs of family members, build a family tree, and explain to them where their last names come. Tell them how the experience of watching them grow up to become teenagers has been for you.
If your children don’t have the support of their friends or classmates, let them know that their family will always be there for them, no matter the circumstances.
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