Tips for parents of kids with autism from a mom who's been there // #autism #autismawareness #autismparent #parenting #kids #specialneeds #advice #tips #support


NOTE: The information in this article is for informational purposes only. It should not be seen as any kind of professional advice, including medical, emotional, therapeutic, or other types of advice. Please consult with a professional before taking any sort of action based on anything you read here. See our full Terms & Conditions here.





An Autism Mom Shares Her Story // #autism #specialneeds #parenting #kids




Staci Grosser has a 10-year-old son who was diagnosed with autism when he was a toddler. If you missed her story of Renner’s autism journey, click here to read it. Then come back here to read her tips. We’ll start out with a few of her tips for friends of parents whose kids have autism or other special needs. Then we’ll move on to advice for other autism parents.


Staci’s Tips for Friends of Autism Parents

  • Check In

Ask them how they’re doing. Ask how you can pray for them. Ask if they need a hug. If you’re not with them, text them. I don’t often have time to talk on the phone, so don’t be offended if your friend doesn’t answer a phone call. But let her or him know you care.


  • Offer Your Support

Especially at first (and even still), I needed so much emotional support because I was hurting and grieving. Listen to your friend and be there for them. Let them talk without judgment. And then follow up. Don’t let it just be a one-time deal.


  • Think Twice About Giving Advice

Advice is a double-edged sword. It can be annoying to the recipient yet can be good at the same time. Make sure what you’re offering might actually be helpful for the person’s child, and don’t push it.


Staci’s Tips for Parents of Kids with Autism

  • Allow Yourself to Grieve

When a diagnosis of autism comes, so does grief for all the things your child (and you) may not be able to do in life. Autism alters your life. You have a child, and in your head you plan all the play dates, you map out vacations, you think about the perfect school, and so on. You imagine them graduating from high school and possibly college. You think about their future marriage and the grandchildren they’ll someday give you.

But then you get a diagnosis like autism, and you don’t know if any of that is ever going to happen. Everything is up in the air. He may be able to do those things. He may not. He may be able to hold down a job. He may not. He may be able to get married. He may not. And the worst part is, he may be able to talk . . . and he may not. That was the hardest for me. That was the most grief I have ever encountered. I didn’t know if my son would ever be able to talk to me. You have to allow yourself the time and space to grieve, and realize that it will take time.

Continue reading “Staci Grosser: Tips for Autism Parents and Their Friends”

Staci Grosser: Parenting a Child with Autism // A mom shares her story of learning her son has autism and all of the hurdles their family has had to jump in the process. // #autism #parenting #kids #specialneeds #story #inspirational


NOTE: The information in this article is for informational purposes only. It should not be seen as any kind of professional advice, including medical, emotional, therapeutic, or other types of advice. Please consult with a professional before taking any sort of action based on anything you read here. See our full Terms & Conditions here.


An Autism Mom Shares Her Story // #autism #specialneeds #parenting #kids

When Staci Grosser gave birth to her first child 10 years ago, she was expecting a four-pound baby due to growth retardation in the womb. However, Renner’s birth weight was a full five pounds. Staci and her husband, Ainslie, were extremely relieved that their baby boy would not need a stay in the NICU and could immediately go home to their house in Franklin, Tennessee.

Renner was a gentle baby, and his parents’ only initial concern was that his mouth muscles weren’t developed enough to suck well. However, the issue was soon resolved, and Staci and her husband, Ainslie, thought everything was fine.

By the time Renner was a year old, Staci and Ainslie noticed that he wasn’t very interactive. He had no interest in playing with them. He also wasn’t doing some basic physical movements that most one-year-old children are able to do, such as pointing and clapping. Staci would take his hands and manipulate them to do the actions but, as she says,

“It’s like his brain just didn’t understand it at all.”

Continue reading “Staci Grosser: Parenting a Child with Autism”

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Books That Teach Kids About ForgivenessAs adults, we know forgiveness is a virtue we all need to cultivate, but we also realize it’s not easily learned. Kids often have a hard time with it (as do adults!), and they need to have forgiveness modeled to them by the people around them in order to begin to understand the need for and importance of it.

As with many things in life, kids (and adults) can also learn about forgiveness from stories—both non-fiction and fiction. Through stories, kids can observe situations where other children need to forgive, and they can learn from the ways the characters deal with those situations.

The following fiction books will help kids understand the importance of forgiveness. This isn’t an exhaustive list of books that teach forgiveness by any means, as many books deal with the theme of forgiveness in minor ways. However, these books place a primary focus on the value of forgiveness.





























Books That Teach Kids About Forgiveness // #kids #parenting #teaching #reading #forgiveness #books #childrensbooks

























































Books That Teach Kids About Forgiveness // #kids #parenting #teaching #reading #forgiveness #books #childrensbooks





























Continue reading “Books That Teach Kids Forgiveness”

Jeanette Hanscome's story brings hope and encouragement to single parents and offers insights for the people in their lives. She also provides tips for how to be an excellent friend to single parents and how best to help their children. #singlemom #singleparent

Note: This is part two of a two-part post about Jeanette Hanscome. Click here to read part one about her early life, writing career, and how she lives a full life with a visual impairment.

Jeanette Hanscome was in a hotel room on vacation when she received the email from her husband. Subject line: “Moving.”

After 22 years of marriage, the two had been separated for a few months. Jeanette had been hoping they would be able to work through their issues, reconcile, and life would go back to normal. But it was not to be. Her husband was moving to a town four hours away from their home in Reno, and he wanted a divorce. She sat in that hotel room and thought, “Life is never going to be the same.”

She said to herself, “I’m going to be a single mom. I’m going to be divorced. And I can’t drive. How am I going to do this?” She saw the possibility of losing absolutely everything, including her writing career.

Jeanette had the perfect job for someone who is unable to drive due to vision limitations: freelance writing and editing from home. But now she might need to find a regular job in order to make enough money as a single mom. She had no idea what would be in store for her and her sons. How would she manage it? It didn’t take long to find out.

Continue reading “Jeanette Hanscome: A Suddenly Single Mom”

How to Connect with Kids Over Books They Love; #kids #parenting #reading #books


How to Use Books to Connect with Kids // Find out how to look for repeating themes in books kids love, and learn how to capitalize on that knowledge in order to connect with them. // #reading #kids #parenting #teaching #books #family #connect #children

I recently had the opportunity to talk to the fifth grade students at School of the Osage in Osage Beach, Missouri, about writing and books. While thinking about what I wanted to say, I thought back to the books I loved as a kid.

I read a ridiculous amount of books when I was little. (And I still do.) But what I realized the other day is that I don’t remember much about most of those books.

There’s even very little I recall about the book I read more than any other book in elementary school: Superfudge by Judy Blume. I’ve always been the kind of person who hates to crack a spine, dog-ear a page, or otherwise mar a book. But my copy of Superfudge was nearly falling apart by the time I outgrew it. Yet I still have very little memory of what it was about, other than the fact that Fudge had an older brother named Peter and a baby sister named Tootsie.

My parents’ basement currently houses boxes upon boxes of Bobbsey Twins, Nancy Drew, Hardy Boys, and Trixie Belden mysteries. However, I remember exactly one minor storyline from any of those hundreds of books. Continue reading “Connect with Kids Over Books They Love”

A few years ago I did some freelance editing work for the Fuller Youth Institute. The first project I worked on was the Sticky Faith Launch Kit, which I found quite fascinating. 

So what’s this sticky faith thing? The Fuller Youth Institute website describes it as: “Sticky Faith is a ministry framework and parenting philosophy backed by practical and proven ideas to help develop long-term faith in teenagers.” So basically, they help ministry leaders and parents with strategies to help guide the faith development of their children with the hope that they won’t abandon it when they reach adulthood.

I honestly don’t remember everything from the kit, but the one thing that really stuck with me is the amount of adults they believe need to be heavily invested in kids’ lives.

Continue reading “The 5:1 Ratio: Kids Need a Tribe”