So on this journey to reach Michael through puberty and everything else going on, our wonderful Educator has told us about another great resource: Dr. Gary Chapman’s tools in his book “Five Love Languages.” Though I pretty much have Michael’s love language down pat, what I have learned from the videos alone were great to add to my parenting arsenal when times have been tough these past few months. And Dad is also following a lot of the wonderful advice from this book. Our Educator brought some wonderful exercises based on the book for Michael and Dad to do, as they have been struggling in the bonding department. In the last week, it’s amazing the improvements I have been seeing. It’s slow moving, but they are getting there. I also can’t believe how it’s the little things, even when there are big discrepancies due to impulse control, blood sugars and rigidities that can make all the difference. I truly am seeing what is making my little boy tick.
On another note, I am reminded by these languages: 1) Words of affirmation, 2) Time spent together, 3) Gifts received, 4) Acts of service and 5) Physical Touch, how we are all the same yet all different. Michael’s and my love language are quite similar. Words of affirmation and time spent together are my two biggies as well. This has helped cement for me what we share in common as a great way to bond. I will tell Michael stories about how when I was scared of something, this is what I would do. This is helping him realize that he is not alone and can turn to me again.
Don’t get me wrong. There are still those tough days and weeks. I had a mini Mommy burnout over the weekend due to being physically and mentally tired by all the anxiety Michael is experiencing, the drawing together and pulling apart from Dad, and the sheer physical responsibility of working and running the house on my own lately as the boys are each finding their footing. I look forward to the day we will all be on the same page again. It is coming as everyone heals separately and together. But it is a process. I know our family will get there.
Exceptional Parents, are you having a harder than normal time reaching your Exceptional Child? Is it more than just their issues? Puberty and the natural pulling away from parents happens for all children, including those with challenges. Don’t be afraid to think of your child as like other children, but in their own way. Don’t be afraid to try using all types of tools to reach them emotionally. Even if the tool is not the right one, you reaching out to touch them, physically and emotionally, will show them your love and care for them. Until next time.
I am a writer, speaker and parent coach. I blog about how my exceptional son with autism and type 1 diabetes is raising me to a better human being and exceptional mom. My mission is to empower other exceptional parents to trust in their parenting instinct while letting their exceptional child open their eyes to all that is possible! For more information on my coaching services and to download a copy of my FREE EBOOK “5 WAYS TO HANDLE EXCEPTIONAL FAMILY ANXIETY” see my website, http://www.creatingexceptionalparenting.com.