Being a Parent With Depression to a Child on the Autism Spectrum
I can’t get off my couch. My depression is weighing heavily on me today.
I know I have things that need to get done. Dishes need to be washed. Laundry needs to be folded, but I am frozen, completely submerged into my couch.
I have a daughter with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). She takes a lot of my energy just to get her through the day. I have to stay positive for her and be happy so she can stay calm.
Do you know how hard that is when I feel like my insides are being ripped out?
My anxiety is so sharp I feel like I’m going to jump out of my skin. I feel a heavy weight that is pushing me farther into the couch. It feels as though I am chained and lock up to myself and there is no key. My skin tingles as though it wants to get up and walk around, but my mind shuts that down.
My daughter craves routine, and structure. As someone who battles depression and anxiety every day, structure and routine can be hard for me. I lack this ability in myself. How am I supposed to do this for my child? Then the failure thoughts rush in — that I am not enough for her, that she would be better off with someone who can keep a house clean, someone who could keep their hair washed.