A child’s autism diagnosis affects every member of the family in different ways. Parents/caregivers must now place their primary focus on helping their child with ASD, which may put stress on their marriage, other children, work, finances, and personal relationships and responsibilities. Parents now have to shift much of their resources of time and money towards providing treatment and interventions for their child, to the exclusion of other priorities. The needs of a child with ASD complicates familial relationships, especially with siblings. However, parents can help their family by informing their other children about autism and the complications it introduces, understanding the challenges siblings face and helping them cope, and involving members of the extended family to create a network of help and understanding.
- Understanding Autism for Dummies, 2006
Finding time for prayer and attending a place of worship also helps many families handle the challenges of autism and provides a safe, inclusive environment for both the child and family (see Autism and Faith).