7 Simple Steps to Help Your Child Emerge From His Shell
The vibrant colors from Sanjeev’s art work stand out to engulf me in their brightness.
Renuka, Sanjeev’s mother is excited about his foray into painting. The engagement and independence is encouraging too.
They’ve progressed from painting together on one sheet, to Sanjeev painting independently.
Today, Sanjeev does not need anybody around him while he paints.
This wasn’t always the case.
Earlier, Sanjeev would stop an activity if Renuka wasn’t around.
But now, he is so engrossed in painting that it doesn’t matter whether someone is around or not.
From setting up the painting station, to fetching water and colors, to painting and finally cleaning up – he does it all by himself.
The icing on the cake is that Sanjeev shares about his artwork and interprets it for his mother.
For this painting, Renuka asked him what he had painted. He said, “house”. When Renuka nodded, he added, “plane”.
Renuka realized that was how houses looked when airplanes took off or landed!
Isn’t it incredible how he threw light on his perspective?
Sanjeev is vocal and always communicated using words. He reads and writes and attended school up to grade six.
While language developed early, it was need-based. Sanjeev wasn’t able to articulate his thoughts and emotions.
45 minutes of painting a day created the bridge from need-based communication to experience-sharing communication, besides giving Sanjeev an outlet to be his authentic self.
Renuka put in the effort to build a relationship with Sanjeev. She used experience sharing communication while engaging with him. The results are there for us all to see.
Dear Parent, we are under the mistaken belief that more language and speech training will enable children with autism to share their thoughts and feelings.
I’ve worked with Sanjeev and his family since the past 6 months.
Renuka has implemented each of the points mentioned above.
When we started working together, she mentioned, “Sanjeev has a lot of untapped potential.”
Isn’t this how you feel about your child too?
Your child has shown you glimpses of his potential. It’s now up to you to help him achieve that potential.
Here are words of wisdom from a person with autism:
“I have seen a process in the ability to adopt an attitude of autistic empowerment for some persons. It begins with the idea that autism is a thing to be eradicated. This is ignorance. From this emerges the idea that one might be able to accept autistic persons but has an attitude of pity and feels bad that they are different. This is tolerance. The next stage is where one is able to see autism as not a thing but a mode of being of the person. This is awareness. Beyond this one begins to focus merely on challenges but to also see strengths. This is acceptance. One then starts to understand the diversity in means of communication. This is furtherance of acceptance.”
“From this point, once is able to incorporate respect, dignity, presuming intellect, embracing diversity and promoting self advocacy. This is empowerment. So one moves from ignorance to tolerance to awareness to acceptance to empowerment.”