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How do you discipline an autistic child?

My friend has a son that is autistic and I watch him from time to time to give her a break. He is 5 he can not talk, and tends to get violent when he is over stimulated and you try to redirect him. I want to be able to continue to help her, but I need a few tricks on how to stop him from getting so over whelmed in my house and how to stop him once he turns violent. I can not have him hurt my kids. Any tips would be great.

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Asked by Anonymous at 4:55 PM on Mar. 25, 2011 in General Parenting

Answers (5)
  • Honestly, it depends on the child and what they are used to at home. Another good idea would be with communication. Does the child use PECS or a picture schedule at home? If so, this should be provided when the child comes to your place to help with continuity of care. I used to hold and rock my child at that age to help him calm down. I would hold him so that his feet were tucked between my legs and i was cradling his arms so he could not hit me and rock him. I don't know how well this child would respond to that if you are not his mother or a full time caregiver that he knows very well. The best suggestions might come from his mother. If she is NOT disciplining at home, you might have issues.
    By the way, I know of many mothers of autistic children who believe that you can not discipline children with autism. This is simply not true. They understand discipline as much as any child.

    Answer by layh41407 at 5:18 PM on Mar. 25, 2011

  • My friends son is non-verbal but has a GREAT deal of understanding so in her case time out in a special booster with a strap works well for them. They use the 1-2-3 magic approach for the most part. I agree the discipline would need to be consistent so really see any results. I would find out what she does at home.  As far as calming my son needs movement to calm, a trampoline or a swing.  Her son neeeds pressure a good hug or to be wrapped tight in a blanket.  It just varies form child to child depending on their needs and ability to comprehind diferent things.


    Answer by But_Mommie at 5:22 PM on Mar. 25, 2011

  • Unfortunately she does not have anything she uses at home. She is now getting help though so she can learn how to help him. I know late in the game, but she did not know the help was there. I want to thank you for the advice I ended up snuggling and rocking him and it worked great. His mom had to run real quick and left with no instructions on the programs they had started with him. So a little stress full for him I am sure.

    Thank you all I am sure he thanks you to cause the snuggling gave him enough comfort to play the games he normally plays here.


    Comment by Anonymous (original poster) at 5:52 PM on Mar. 25, 2011

  • if he understood sign language that would be helpful, but you could use resources that for autistic children that help them better express themselves. Flash cards and other visual aids:


    Answer by pumpkinpie778 at 9:37 AM on Apr. 4, 2011

  • Teaching Tips for Children and Adults with Autism:


    Answer by pumpkinpie778 at 9:39 AM on Apr. 4, 2011

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