I had a friend ask me about what it was like to have a special needs child in my home, and I realized that that was actually a much bigger question that he realized. My wife and I are both writers, and our son, who is autistic as well as deaf adds some interesting elements to our lives.
The demands of raising a child with autism are great, and families frequently experience high levels of stress. This stress can make finding time and the focus to write difficult
Planning for his needs take a lot of out time. We are fortunate that the wonderful state of Texas helps us by funding his schooling so he is away at his school a good bit of time. When he was younger, and was home more, it was far more trying.
What many do not seem to understand is with many autistics, as they get older, they develop better control and focus, allowing for a more normal household. They also tend to have very high IQ and due to this, their observations can astound you. Their have been many occasions where my son will be multitasking on two or three things and will stop all of them to point something out to me that I have not noticed.
The uniqueness of each individual with autism makes the experience of raising a child with autism different than any other special need. That difference causes compromises such as sometimes putting off writing until late at night or early in the morning.
If he is busy playing his games, I can usually edge in on him and get enough room near the computer to work. Sometimes I will take my laptop when I head out somewhere to get some extra time.
Though it may seem like all downsides, I would not trade the time we get with him for anything. His special perspective on things is always enlightening. He has his own views on everything around him and it often opens our eyes to new perspectives.
Though juggling time is always a tricky task, I have to say that having him here offers a very clear picture of reality and gives us a regular reason to step away. This in my opinion is a valuable break.
To put it simply, my son is one of the best things I have ever had happen in my life. In fact, as far as writing goes, I think he is invaluable as an anchor to reality. Though time is always taxing, I think every writer has stress over not having enough time, no matter the situation.