We want to start having company over. We love John and Jane and their family. We want to visit with friends and laugh. We want to visit and have “normal” lives without having to wait until our son is permanently in residence. We want to have the time to clean and prepare food. We don’t want out guests to have to bring anything. How do we enjoy them, and they, us, with all of the challenges we face?
How do we make it so that we can create a “normal” agenda doesn’t upset our special-needs children?
We do not want to wait for another 3-5 years to have special people in our home. We want to laugh, play cards, and serve yummy food to them.
We wish to open our home to our friends without feeling selfish about the fact that we have a special-needs person here who, of course, takes priority.
There are things that we know we can do. We shop early, we time our cleaning of our house. But the biggest challenge is that, even when we have fed and medicated our adult child and he is ready for bed, have we done enough? We do not speak in loud voices.
However, there is something even more. As we already do, how do others make it so that, when guests visit, our child will either enter the room and “check them out” without feeling stressed, or simply be able to go to sleep without thinking that they have to leave before all is peaceful and bedtime can start?
We have worked on this for years. With some guests, our son doesn’t mind whether they are loud. He simply closes his door and goes to sleep. With other guests, he waits until they leave.
Are you able to have “friends come over to play” in the evening without causing a melt-down in your special-needs child? We finally have more success than not, but it has taken 18 years. Even as an infant, our boy would scream and require so much attention that having company was a privilege that we did not have.