Holidays can be hard for our kids. There are so many changes in routine and so much anxiety over the excitement of coming gifts, etc. It makes it hard as caregivers to enjoy the season. I guess the one thing to keep in mind is that no FASD child is actively trying to ruin the holidays. They want to enjoy them also. They are trying to process the change of no school, school programs, their excitement, and finally your growing anxiety. So try to stay calm. Try to remember that this is a wonderful time of year. Concentrate on the positive and try to help your children maintain their schedules as much as possible (even though there is no school keep bedtime and wake time the same). Structure their days, unstructured time is time to fall apart. Limit the decorating…remember that visual stimulation can cause issues. Limit the gifts also as this can cause stress…just too much. We do a bit on Christmas eve and some on Christmas morning. Also remember diet…too much food coloring can cause unbelievable behaviors. Preservatives can be a problem too.
Just breathe, let yourself remember what you love about the holidays and recreate it as much as you can. Don’t give up on yourself or your kids. They need to have good holiday memories too. Remember take breaks if you need them. I am learning to just say I need to excuse myself. Okay so I spend time in the bathroom, it works. I can calm and redirect myself so that I can return and better deal with the situation. Hope you all have a Merry Christmas and a happy New Year!!!!!!!!!