What are the family struggles of Autistic people

Family Comes First - Autistic People
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Family Comes First

It is always said that family comes first. Hence in the case of diagnosis, they are the first and the closest ones to be affected.

To a third party, having Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) may be either disruptive or pitiable. But for the family, it calls for a major lifestyle change. Every member of the autistic individual’s inner circle experiences this change.

It then becomes a struggle faced by all members of the family, not just the diagnosed individual. The extent to which they would have to change their lifestyle depends on how the disorder develops over time.

Communication Problem

Some individuals may be able to communicate normally but they may have difficulty in engaging or maintaining a conversation. They may also have very futile or odd ways of making friends. While other individuals may only be able to form a simple sentence or string together few basic words.

Body Language of Autistic People

Apart from just communication, they have extremely unusual body language. This is because they have difficulty in socializing as they are not able to interpret social cues. They lack the ability to understand other people’s perspectives at a very basic level.

This is often followed by extremely stereotypic behavior and restricted imagination. Their brain functions in such a way that they can’t often accept changes. Even the smallest actions of change (like changing bed covers) can trigger a tantrum.

But we can’t undermine the effort and struggles that the individual themselves go through. For example in public places sometimes the autistic individual may accidently do actions and behavior to offend someone else. But the key point here is that they don’t mean to offend anyone. With communication being a key issue, it’s hard for them as well to explain this point.

They don’t mean to portray stereotypical behavior to certain sights, sounds, smell, or colors. But something about these senses unintentionally triggers their behavior. They feel the need to make a conscious effort and learn how to interpret social cues.

Being people with an average level of brain functioning, they make exhausting efforts of observing and copying other behaviors.

Lifestyle Adjustments

Autism is diagnosed at an early age in a lot of cases. Hence it’s always the close family of the autistic child that has to adjust to the major lifestyle change in order to adapt to their child’s condition. So we need to realize what a struggle it must be for them! On top of that, they also have to be on the lookout of society. It is pretty difficult to deal with this kind of struggle and caution. More importantly, we need pay caution to or heed to the mental strength that the family members have.

On top of that, they also have to be on the lookout of society. It is pretty difficult to deal with this kind of struggle and caution. More importantly, we also need to pay attention to the mental strength of the family members.


It takes a lot to accept that someone close and dear to you has to deal with this problem. But accepting and embracing this shows the unconditional love that exists between the individual and the family. There do exist many intervention programs and therapies for parents and family who find it difficult to cope. True beauty and strength lie in ignoring those pitiable looks and handling their child’s temper tantrums. That’s how they overcome their struggles and keep the family going!

Nikitha Menon

With the pursuit of knowledge and love for the written word, Nikhita Menon tries to explore the world of disabilities, disorders, diseases and all stigma associated. She is a fresh college graduate from Christ University, Banglore majored in English, Psychology and Media Communication.

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