In my work as a psychologist specializing in childhood disorders, I have evaluated many children who have sensory processing disorder. While SPD can look like ADHD, anxiety, oppositional defiant disorder, or an autism spectrum disorder, the label is not so important. What is most important are the treatments the child receives, how parents and family members interact with these kiddos at home, and ways we can help them function better in the outside world to reach their full potential.
I didn’t truly understand the impact of living with a child with these issues until I discovered I have one of my own! She is my spunky, energetic, incredibly bright shining star. She is also highly reactive, hypervigilant, and extremely anxious at times. Whether it’s a new and unfamiliar situation, finding the right clothes and shoes to wear, getting out the door to make it to school on time, or getting ready for bed, I have found that I am often faced with a challenge for which I feel ill-prepared.
There are many moments, as a parent, when I don’t have the slightest idea how to handle a meltdown, and I’m on the verge of one myself! I will quickly grab one of my parenting books, or try to remember the highlights of one I poured through the night before, only to realize that the first step is to BREATHE. And to help her breathe. Then maybe I can try one of the many techniques out there on how to parent a “spirited” child.
The goal of this blog is to share my ideas and experiences, both personal and professional, and to develop a forum in which parents of SPD kids can share their own ideas, resources, and experiences. I also visualize this blog being used as an online support group for parents, and I encourage you to comment, question, and provide information! It is always comforting to know we are not alone.