by Lillian Csernica on December 12, 2015
The holiday season is here and we’re all out there in the stores or at home shopping online. The grandparents, aunts, and uncles all want to know what they should get for that special needs child.
The key word there is child.
I’ve been browsing through various holiday shopping guides for special needs children. Most of them address the needs of children in preschool through elementary. I spent considerable time rephrasing my search keywords until I started to find guides that are useful for teenagers and the kids who are on the edge of becoming adults.
As the mother of two teenage boys with very different sets of special needs, one of the toughest questions I have to answer is, “What should we get for him?” Our extended family looks to me to know what subjects the boys are interested in, which specific items the boys want, and of those which ones the boys will really get some use out of.
Michael’s physical limitations are a key factor. Fortunately, he’s become fond of fashionable clothing and keeping his hair in a good cut. He also likes classic rock and roll along with some country and western music. Audiobooks are now a good option for him. He’s always up for new art supplies.
Some people think it’s strange when I say it’s so much harder to shop for John. He’s verbal, he has the same physical skills other teenage boys have, and he loves electronics. No problem, right? John has a closet full of toys he never plays with. He’ll get fixated on a particular subject for a month or two, then abandon it and move on to something else. Then, a year or two later, he’ll come back to that first subject and get fixated on it again, but at a different level of cognition and application.
I know how hard this can be. I know the frustration of seeing what your child can’t have because of what he or she can’t do.
Here’s a list of links that will take you to the holiday guides where I’ve been looking for gifts for my boys. I hope this information helps you make your kids’ holiday wishes come true!
EDIT: I’m very happy to say I just found two excellent gifts for Michael at Fat Brain Toys. The site is well-organized, the prices are reasonable, and the shipping is a bargain!