How to Cope with Stress while Caring for a Child with Autism

The stress can come in many different forms. Mentally, you can fall to become depressed or have anxiety. Physically, you can be more prone to becoming sick with illnesses such as; cardiovascular, immune system, and gastrointestinal issues. Socially, most people are not educated about Autism which can cause shame to parents from the public eye. While your child's behavior is not meeting the public's expectation, the parents and caregivers stress on how they are going to prevent the meltdowns while being in public. The other stressors that can effect a parent and caregiver is financial well-being; while you work a regular 40 hour a week job. A parent with a child with autism most likely cannot due to the care their child needs, and if they are not getting assistance from the state they could always be worried about their financials. As a caregiver, you may have additional expenses like; medical bills, childcare, etc.

While a meltdown is not easy, the best path for both yourself and the child is to find the best path that works for you both to prevent one from happening. Again, not all meltdowns are preventable; but knowing your child's stressors will help eliminate issues for yourself as well.
There are different types of strategies you can do to cope with stress while caring for a child with Autism. Whether parents or a caregiver, a meltdown is not easy to handle while trying to calm your child down. Coming from a professional point of view, the easiest way to cope as a parent is trying to find down time for yourself. Making simple changes to some of these stressors also is a great way to start. Try a nightly routine allowing them to go to bed earlier, or doing some sort of exercise with them.


If you have a partner or professional make sure you all are on the same page so they can help with these simple changes. Know that there are other forms of help if you do not have a partner or professional help. I would recommend looking into Residential Options in your area, they are usually a volunteer opportunity with reliable and trained helpers who can help with giving you some free time to focus on the present and not the future.

Just remember, asking for help from your friends, family, coworkers, and professionals around you is not a crime. Caring for a child just alone takes a "village" to raise, but raising a child with Autism takes a community; there are people out there willing to help, you just have to ask!

1 comment

  • Hi I’m a fulltime carer of my 4.5year old grandson who is autistic & my mum who has Parkinson’s and alzheimer’s, I’m in the UK & have never been told or offered respite from either, the only me time I get is me going to bed,, how do I find out about help regards to any form of respite

    J Mitchell

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