Letting Go of the Grief

Taking Care of the Care-Giver : An Aspergers101 Exclusive Series

We welcome our Aspergers101 readers to a series dedicated to you, the care-giver. Pause and re-fresh as Dr. Ghia Edwards takes us into the second of a series of four blogs aimed specifically toward you.

Caregivers, we are a special breed, we push through the pain to attend to the needs of those we care for but did you know that grief is a strong part of the lives of the caregiver. The medical definition of grief:

Grief: The normal process of reacting to a loss. The loss may be physical ( Such as death), social (Such as divorce), or occupational ( Such as a job). Emotional reactors of grief can include anger, guilt, anxiety, sadness and despair. Physical reactions of grief can include sleeping problems, changes in appetite, physical problems, or illness. https://www.medicinenet.com

When we are in the caregiver role, we can lose ourselves in the role we play and in that loss comes the grief. We no longer get to necessarily go to lunch and dinners with friends like we use to, or grab a cup of coffee with a family member. We don’t get our usual alone time or get to finish that clay pot we started to create in that art class, sometimes we just are at a loss for the things we have given up, albeit willingly. 

There is such joy in caring for the people that we love but there is a tug of war that can happen and take over on the negative side, IF we are not actively pursuing our own healthy mindfulness state. Below are 10 helpful suggestions of how to heal your soul and below that, I am giving you a tool of self assessment on stress and depression of a person in our roles. After you score it please reach out and share the results with a safe person, clergy, friend, therapist. if you don’t have that person in place yet, pick up the phone and call my office, we understand and we care. There are many of us who understand the Spirit,Soul,Mind and Body process that the caregiver goes through but I say we need to bring more joy to the journey and that is only done in us realizing that we have to face what we are going through, be real with the circumstances and proactive in our own healing process.

How to Help HEAL YOUR  SOUL When You are Grieving:

Beware of the Martyr Complex

Taking Care of the Care-Giver : An Aspergers101 Exclusive Series

Taking care of yourself is a must when you are a care-giver or more specifically a guardian of a child with special needs. 

Dr. Ghia Edwards, Psy.D.

“We have to give out of the overflow versus an empty tank. When we give out of our overflow, we are built up enough to give healthy help and joy. When we let our tank go down, it is like a car that begins to knock because the sediment on the bottom of the tank, is ruining the smooth running of the car. In these situations the car doesn’t run well, much like us when we do not have positive healthy, nourishing self care. We can only give out that which we have, we must center on the Spirit, Soul, Mind and Body”. – Dr. Ghia Edwards, Psy.D. 

We welcome our Aspergers101 readers to a series dedicated to you, the care-giver. Pause and re-fresh as Dr. Ghia Edwards takes us into the first of a series of four blogs aimed specifically to you. Note: You might especially enjoy the added audio portion inserted into the text below!

“We cannot help anyone if we are not helping ourselves first”, we have all heard this before but what does this actually mean and how do we put it into practice. The Inner Workings of a Healthy Helper. Spirit, Soul, Mind and Body health keep the caregiver from running into the weeds. It’s like they say when you are flying, “In the event of an emergency apply your own mask first, then help others around you”. It’s quite a simple practice, so WHY oh why do we not implement it in our lives, we’ll I have theory.
When we are caregiving we are getting a payoff of some sort. If it’s just knowing that we are doing the correct thing for those we are caring for but with that comes being needed. Being needed is seductive, it is alluring, it feels great to know you are valuable but it can be just a step away from being a martyr. Beware of the martyr complex!  It’s subtle but in my line of work I have seen this over and over again and perhaps even participated in the behavior myself. Yes I am a recovering over doer aka martyr.
Here are some solutions to help us NOT become a martyr.

Asperger Syndrome explained perfectly on “Arthur”

In a little over 2 minutes, this episode of the childrens animated program, Arthur, explains Aspergers Syndrome in a way that even judgmental adults can understand! Great way to have your visiting relatives and holiday guests understand your Asperger child’s actions and reactions during a lengthy stay.

Dr. Temple Grandin: Discipline is Key

Dr. Temple Grandin on DISCIPLINE

“I cannot emphasize the importB9315403164Z.1_20141208230949_000_GLQ9BRDPJ.1-0ance of consistency.  When I was in elementary school, the penalty for having a tantrum was to have no TV for one night.  That was the rule and it was always enforced.  It is essential for the rules to be consistent at BOTH home and school. Parents and teachers must work together otherwise the child may manipulate the parent against the teacher and vice versa.  Kids need to learn that “No” means No and be rewarded when they do things right.  You also need to determine if a behavior problem is caused by pain or sensory over sensitivity.  Hidden painful medical problems must be ruled out.  Some common ones are – acid reflex (heartburn), constipation, yeast infections, toothaches, and earaches.  A child may fear going into a room where a smoke alarm had previously gone off, because it hurt his/hear ears.  After these biological causes of behavior problems are ruled out, then the behavioral motivation can be figured out.

The three main behavioral causes of tantrums and other problems behaviors are:

  • Get attention
  • Frustration because communication is difficult
  • Escape from a task

Each one of these motivators needs to be handled in a different way.  Often the best way to handle behaviors motivated for attention getting is to ignore it.  If a non-verbal child is frustrated because he/she cannot communicate, he/she should be given a means to communicate, such as a picture board or picture exchange.  There are many new apps available for I Pads and other tablets for communication.  If the child is trying to escape from a task, you need to make sure the task is not stupid.  An example of a stupid task would be making a brilliant 8-year-old do baby math drills.  He/she should be given the more advanced math book.

All children in the autism spectrum should be expected to do daily living tasks that they are capable of doing.  Some examples are making their bed, being on time for the school bus or helping with household chores.  When I was a child, I was expected to have good table manners and to say “please” and “thank you.”  When I made a mistake with table manners, mother did not say No. She told me the correct behavior.  For example if I ate mashed potatoes with my fingers, she said, “No, use your fork.”  She gave me the instruction, instead of just saying NO.”

-Dr. Temple Grandin

The above and other Q & A from Dr. Temple Grandin was provided by is posted at:  http://www.templegrandin.com/faq.html 

Raeme Bosquez-Greer

Aspergers101 Inspirational Series

The great Ralph Waldo Emerson once wrote: “The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well.” We at Aspergers101 would like to recognize those who serve. People helping others and truly making a difference in the lives of those with special needs. We begin our inspirational series featuring a woman I’ve seen frequent Central and South Texas with her grit toward helping young people gain traction in the world of employment. Raeme Bosquez-Greer is a superwoman of sorts…she is that strength behind linking an employer to a suitable employee…then making that relationship flourish. Raeme is a program coordinator by title, but truly gives of herself, everyday, toward persons diagnosed with a disability. Of course, she only sees the “ability” in each and every client making her a true inspiration!

AS101: We are inspired by you Raeme Bosquez-Greer! First please give us an overview of what you do. 

Raeme Bosquez-Greer

Raeme: I am the Program Coordinator for Job Adventures a 501(c) that is dedicated to helping young people with disabilities find meaningful employment. Mainly I help young people transitioning from high school to the world of work.  We teach interview skills by discussing the various types of interview, performing mock interviews and help with answering questions appropriately.  We help build resume’s and learn what Cover Letters and Thank You Letters are.  Young people are taught how to go about a job search.  We provide a Work Experience program where individuals get to try out various jobs for a few weeks to see what fits them best.  We then seek to place individuals in appropriate, meaningful job.  Seeing the kids flourish is my passion. As Program Coordinator I communicate with our staff and provide information to and coordinate with our consumers and employers.  I establish and maintain interpersonal relationships, developing cooperative working relationships with other and maintaining those relationships.  I develop goals and plans for our staff and ensure that these goals are met. I am also responsible for communicating with people outside the organization, with the community, government and other external sources.

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“Remember, the only person you have to be better than is the person you were yesterday!” – Raeme Bosquez-Greer

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Interview with the Writer of TV Series “Asperger’s High”

If you haven’t seen it, here is “Asperger’s High”, a mock drama situated around a fictitious sitcom as seen on youtube.

Sam and Jennifer interview its very talented co-writer and actress, Leslie Tsina, below. Tsina talks about the making of the mock drama “Aspergers High” with some behind-the-scene tidbits, reactions from the autism community and her future projects.

Contact Information:

Lesley Tsina
www.lesleytsina.com
www.devastatorpress.com
www.youtube.com/user/golesley

Jason Axinn, our director:
http://www.funnyordie.com/jaxinn

Ben Siemon www.bensiemon.com/twitter: @benjaminjs

Today is the Day: Skate for Autism/Asperger Awareness!

Rollercade Fundraising Event

Today is the day! Join Aspergers101 as we skate for Autism/Asperger Awareness!

Aspergers101 is having a fundraiser at the Rollercade today, this Thursday, August 17th, from 6:30pm to 8:30pm! Come join us for a fun (sensory friendly for our SPD friends) night to celebrate the last days of summer before school is back in session! We are raising awareness for Autism/Aspergers and creating a space for ASD youth and family to come together and enjoy themselves. 100% of the entrance fee for the Rollercade is going to Aspergers101 so that we can continue servicing the ASD community with free online resources and local community events. Please share and come with your family/friends!

Date: August 17, 2017
Event: Skate for Autism/Asperger Awareness!
Venue: The Rollercade
(210) 826-6361
Location: 223 Recoleta Rd, San Antonio, TX
San Antonio, Texas 78216
United States
Cost:  $10 includes two hour skate and roller skate rental

 

Join Aspergers101 as we skate for Autism/Asperger Awareness! Let’s all go to a true San Antonio’s landmark…The Rollercade for one more roll around the rink before school sets in. The nostalgic wooden rink will take you back to a day long gone and owner and USA Sports Roller Hall of Famer, Verna Quaranto will keep it a sensory-friendly skate for our 2-hour designated celebration! 100% of entry fee(s) will be donated to the outreach programs offered through Aspergers101…come see us!

 

Date: August 17, 2017
Event: Skate for Autism/Asperger Awareness!
Venue: The Rollercade
(210) 826-6361
Location: 223 Recoleta Rd, San Antonio, TX
San Antonio, Texas 78216
United States
Public: Public

New Resource for the Texas Special Needs Community

I am so excited to tell you about a new website for families of children with disabilities and special health care needs: Navigate Life Texas  (AvancemosJuntosTexas). We at Aspergers101.org are always seeking informative new streams of support for families trying to offer their autistic/aspergers child the very best in services and Navigate Life Texas fills the bill! If you do not live in Texas, then by all means inquire about getting a Navigate Life (or one like it) in your state/country.                     – Jennifer Allen/Aspergers101

download (4)

This bilingual website was designed to be a place of support and a source of help.  It was created by a task force that’s part of the Texas Health and Human Services Commission.

It was three years in the making and the website development team spent a lot of time talking to parents across Texas.  They wanted to make sure the content would meet family’s needs.

One unique feature is that every page of the site was written, reviewed, or edited by parents of children with disabilities and special health-care needs. 

The website has content to address the needs of parents of children of ALL ages. It contains articles on: