Autistic children need ‘Super-Parents’ to improve their disability

Do children with autism need special care at home as well as in school? So do parents need ‘special’ training to support autistic kids? According to a research published in the Lancet, the parents’ better understanding of what autism is and how it affects their children will improve the autistic child’s disability.

The study focused on children with severe autism, who were often unable to talk to their parents. The training consisted in recording the parents and the autistic child while playing then watching the video back with a therapist to pull out information and highlight easily-missed moments when the autistic child nearly imperceptibly moved to play/interact with their parents.

What this research wants to achieve is improving mum and dad’s parenting to increase and develop the social skills and help the child communicate. This training slowly moved on to getting the child to speak more.

Erin Hall-Gardiner social worker at Supportive Positives Paths based in Edinburgh after two years of experience working with children and adults with disabilities and in particular with autistic children and their families totally agrees with this research. Parents should have access to this kind of help and its through this studies that they have the chance to understand how they can best support their children, can bring out the best in them and allow their relationships to flourish.

Super-Parenting seems like a great therapy as it is an early intervention that incorporates the whole family’

Megan Casson social worker and carer at Supportive Positive Paths as well believes instead that autism is not really about improvement, its about the child becoming slowly more confident and doing things more easily in their own time.

‘I don’t really agree with a specific training to become “special parents”. When a child is diagnosed with autism the whole family automatically develops an interest in the topic, inform itself and starts a mutual process of learning and understanding through a trial-error technique’.

Many parents see this as a very controversial and very sensitive topic. Some families could take the ‘train to improve the understanding of your child’ the wrong way. Families will have to choose freely if taking part in this sessions is beneficial for their autistic kid and for the harmony of their relationship.



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