Being a parent can be tough. You spend much of your time caring for another person, which is perfectly understandable but stressful just the same. Throw in the factor of autism, and you can feel really overwhelmed about everything. Taking care of yourself is important because overall, it means being a better care provider for your child. Take a look at some of the things you should do to help yourself out.
1. Take a little time for you. At least once every day, make sure you take a few minutes to do something you enjoy. It could be something as simple as watching an episode of your favorite TV show, going for a walk, or going for a short drive. It's easy to forget how important it is to do something you enjoy when you spend so much of your time taking care of someone else.
2. Phone a friend. Seriously. Call up someone who you enjoy talking to and have a chat. Taking care of a child who has autism can mean spending a lot of time focusing on helping them communicate, which means you may not do a lot of communicating as you normally would, especially if you are the only parent with your child for the majority of the day.
3. Seek support.Most places have a place available that can help you find autism spectrum resources. If you do have a place in your location, stop in and ask if there are any support groups for parents organized in your area. If there are not any currently available, consider starting one yourself. Talking to other caregivers openly who completely understand your frustrations can be really helpful.
4. Ask someone to help. There is no shame in getting help when you are feeling overwhelmed. See if a friend or family member will come and relieve you of your caregiving duties so you can get a break. If you have no one close who can help you out, talk to a respite care service provider in your area.
5. Get some exercise. It is always healthy to get a little you time in the form of a quick workout or yoga session. Not only will this help you feel better physically so you can better handle the demands of caring for your child, but it will also help you with relieving your stress and feeling more emotionally sound.