Autism Resources

Tips for Developing Healthy Self-Esteem in Your Child with Autism

BlueSprig June 13, 2018

Here are some tips for parents to help their children on their journey towards developing healthy self-esteem.

Children with autism often have a more challenging time developing healthy self-esteem compared to their peers. It can be tough for them to understand their value and self-identity, particularly when they struggle with understanding their own emotions. By incorporating these strategies into your parenting approach, you can help your child with autism develop a stronger, more healthy sense of self-esteem and resilience. Remember that building self-esteem is a journey, and your support and encouragement can make all the difference.

Find Their Passion

Encourage your child to find an interest they are passionate about, and support it as a family. This can provide a sense of accomplishment and help them feel valued, especially during moments when they feel inadequate or have failed at something. It also allows them to identify aspects about themselves that they are proud of and can share with family and peers to boost their confidence and sense of importance. Let them discover their niche, whether it’s space exploration or presidential trivia, and let them shine!

Encourage Self-Awareness

Teach your child valuable skills in self-awareness and emotional regulation by sharing your feelings and how you cope with them. By demonstrating that everyone, including you, experiences a range of emotions, you help them understand that it’s okay to feel the way they do.

Set Aside Time for Relaxation

Allow your child to engage in low-stress activities they enjoy, such as listening to music, drawing, or spending time alone. It’s important to create moments of calm and self-reflection, which can be very beneficial for autistic children.

Find Groups for Socialization

Look for support groups or social clubs where your child can interact with others who share similar interests or challenges. Building friendships and a sense of belonging can significantly boost healthy self-esteem for children with autism.

Encourage Journaling

Journaling can be a safe outlet for your child to express their thoughts and feelings, fostering self-awareness and confidence.

Explore Interests and Hobbies

Encourage your child to try new things, such as painting, playing a musical instrument, or gardening. This can help them feel a sense of accomplishment and mastery, which can lead to an increase in self-esteem.

Remind Them That Everyone Has Bad Days

Teach your child that having a bad day doesn’t make them a bad person. It’s important to remind them that everyone struggles sometimes, but that they can always start fresh the next day.

Celebrate Differences

Emphasize the importance of differences and celebrate the unique traits of each family member. This can help your child understand that being different is not a bad thing, but rather something to be proud of.

Model Healthy Self-Esteem

Children learn by observing their parents, so it’s essential to model healthy self-esteem for your child with autism. Show your child that while it’s important to set goals, that failure is a part of life, and emphasize that it doesn’t define who they are as a person. Emphasize the importance of trying, even if the outcome isn’t what they expected.