Trick or Treating Tips for Autism Parents

It’s almost time for Halloween! Zachary (my son on the autism spectrum) and I are so so excited. If you’re an autism parent like me you know that Halloween might be a little different for us than it is for neurotypical families. Our kids may not have the socialization skills to do traditional trick-or-treating, they might have sensory aversions that prevent them from wearing costumes, they might be considered “too old” if they’re still wanting to trick or treat in their teens.


Now this is one of my favorite holidays, and I want to make sure you can enjoy it with your child just as much as I do with mine. So today I’m sharing some Trick or Treating Tips for Autism Parents!


Tip Number 1: Practice beforehand.

The first tip is that you need to practice. The first thing you need to do is show them how to get ready. You want to do some dress rehearsals. Don’t wait until the actual day of Halloween to put your child in their costume. If they don’t like it, if they don’t like the feel of it – and you know our children are more sensory sensitive – then they are going to have meltdowns during Halloween because they aren’t comfortable. So what I do with Zachary is I always try to get his costume early, and I always try to keep him included in the costume decisions. So I have him pick out what costume he’s going to be. We try it on the day before Halloween, or days before Halloween, to get him used to the whole concept on what Halloween is. While you’re trying on costumes, you want to make sure you talk to them about what the rules of Halloween are. You want to make sure you give them a nice social story. Make sure you describe to them what’s going to happen for Halloween: you’re going to get dressed (if you have pictures use that to help them with the story), you’re going to go from house to house, you’ll get get candy and you can choose them. Just show them what it will be. During that time some of you may like to practice. Practicing always helps, so as they’re getting dressed act like it’s a costume rehearsal. During that rehearsal, you want to make sure that we try it on early, and we speak about it – what are the do’s and don’ts, it’s okay to go to houses with mom, it’s okay for us to do this house. You can tell them the names of the homes or show them the path.


Tip Number 2: Keep trick-or-treating short.

Then you want make sure it’s not too long, keep it short! Halloween doesn’t have to be long and dragged out. Guess what happens when we drag it out? Us parents are the ones that are having way more fun than our kids when we drag it out. I like to go early in the game. As soon as I pick Zachary up we head straight there. As soon as I pick him up from school that day, I take his costume, sometimes we get dressed in the car, and in the bright and day time we go trick or treating. Don’t wait for the night time y’all, go early!


Tip Number 3: Create a candy plan.

Then we also want to make sure we talk about what happens with the candy when we come back. Yes, we have to have a candy plan! And we need to discuss that early in the game, because we don’t want to wait until they come back home and they’re having this meltdown because you didn’t explain to them which ones they can have or how many they can have. Tell them beforehand they can have five, they can have three, they can have none. You can decide!


Tip Number 4: Have fun with it!

This is a time where a lot of us are nervous and we’re not sure how our kids are going to respond, so when we plan ahead of time and we practice we can take some of that anxiety out and have fun with it. For our kids that can not want to go out, don’t want to, or aren’t ready for it or are just not ready for dress up – how about you have them hand out the candy when the kids come? So now you can dress your home up and they can be the ones to hand out the candy when the bell rings and you can give them a few words to say to your visitors like “trick-or-treat” or “welcome to our home,” something to make it fun! Everyone can still take part in this holiday, even if they don’t want to dress up or go outside.


I also know in some places when Zachary was younger we would go into malls instead of going door to door on the street. So we were in a smaller but confined area, and especially around 3 o’clock it’s quiet, it’s not during the time when everyone is in there shopping. So going to malls or somewhere indoors might be helpful to you and your child as well.



So those are my four Trick or Treating Tips for Autism Parents! Definitely let me know if you have anymore tips that you’d like to share with me and other autism parents below.


Right now I’m hosting a Halloween Giveaway on my Instagram! One lucky person will win one FREE month of my Ignite Your Business Membership program. My handle is @draligriffith. Make sure to go enter for your chance to win!



Check out some of my other recent blogs with autism parenting tips:

Autism and Bullying: 3 Au-mazing Tips to Protect Your Child

3 Au-mazing Tips for School Wins

3 Au-mazing Communication Tips for a Successful School Year

The Power of Self Love

Have you ever wondered what was it about our life that makes us so uniquely ourselves? The coolest thing I love about meeting people is that each person has different experiences in life. I love to go places where I can people watch and kind of make up in my head what’s going on in their lives. I definitely add different things as similar to what’s going on in my life so that they can kind of make it make sense to me, but sometimes I can get real fun with it. You know, I sit down and I think about what do people see when they look at me and sometimes you may see someone that looks very confident or you know, I’ve noticed something different about me is that I have learned to walk with my head held high after spending many years of walking with my head hanging low, like literally just looking down, avoiding eye contact. I made a conscious decision to be more present and be more aware of myself in space.


So a lot of this conversation today is going to go back to self because we are a society that have completely lost ourselves in terms of who we are, how we’re showing up. Sometimes we get caught up into what others are thinking or what others may perceive that we tend to lose ourselves. I mean myself included. I spent a majority of my life really giving a lot of cares about what anyone else perceived about me too. They think I was too dark, too skinny, too fat, too tall, too short, too ugly, too pretty. You know, you would go through these different places too – not too smart, not smart enough. Right? I don’t know if you felt this way where when you show up you get so nervous, or I’ve got so nervous that because of what I thought people would perceive of me, it would cause me to dim my own life and not be able to let who I truly am shine out. Part of my development, my personal development, especially going through my greatest challenges and reflecting back on myself, I realize that most of those times I lost myself in that relationship, in that situation, in that really trying time that I didn’t think I could actually come out of at that time. When I reflect back on it, most of what I would come back to is I would wonder what would others think of me. I mean, when I went through the whole diagnosis with Zachary being on the spectrum, I’ll be so honest, I was concerned, “well, what would others think of me? What if they think that I am a bad mom? What if they think that I caused the autism? What if they think that I didn’t know how to handle it? Would they even be able to embrace me with the changes or the differences that my child clearly exhibited when you were around us?”


Right? I began to realize that when I cared more about what others think, I completely breakdown. That’s where the breakdown began. Lived sat in space or countless time. You know I wish I can say it was a limited time, but for most of us it’s years. I mean we’ve spent our childhood with people telling us what we should do, how we should look, how we should act. That was creating a sense of what our self should be, when we actually had the ability to be still and connect with who we truly are. Those weren’t things that anyone was telling us when we were younger. I don’t know about you, but nobody was telling me. I sit down and I remember hearing that “you’re supposed to do that, girls are supposed to do that, black girls are supposed to do this, doctors are supposed to do that, moms are supposed to do that, wives are supposed to do that.” All these social norms of what things people thought that’s how we should be.


So my message today really, and I know I’m going around this in a lot of circles because today, I really wanted to come in and just really reflect on how perceptions can really mess us up. That’s the reality of it. It can really mess us up. It can have us where we completely disconnect from who we truly are, where we are. We can completely disconnect from others around us and most of it is based on what we think others would think. Instead of us realizing that forget what anyone else thinks and get back into the source of who I truly am. Now, I remember, if you go back to my first episode of The Dr. Ali Griffith Show I spoke about who I am and I spoke about me being an audiologist, speech pathologist an autism mom, a book about my journey towards becoming a coach and serving others out there, but it never really truly got to the who, the core of who I truly am. You know what I started to realize when I tapped back into who I truly am, and you can do this as you’re reading, is really think back to who your core self is without any change, without thinking of what others are going to do, without the reflections or the thoughts and opinions of others. But who you are when you’re at stillness,  your soul, your core, the thing that you connect with within yourself – who is that? What does that feel like? Does it feel like piece? Does it feel like disarray, does it feel like chaos? And how do you get back to that stillness of self where you reconnect back to just being right? Just being present in all that is around you?


One of the things I really love about me is the fact that I tend to connect really well with people. I’d say that’s one of my gifts. How is it that I show up in the world with the ability to connect with others, but I had to realize that in order to connect with others, first I had to learn how to connect with myself. What does connecting with myself look like? It looks like being still. What does connecting with myself look like? It looks like allowing myself permission to mess up. It looks like embracing all of me, my outside, my inside, my ups, my downs, and most importantly, how I choose to show up in the world. How I choose to want to respond to certain things. I don’t have to do anything anymore because once I connect that to my core self, all I have to do is just be.


So if you’re feeling lost out there and you’re trying to figure out how do I create this whole self love? Self love really just has to do with being in existence with yourself and connecting with who you truly are without any impact that others’ thoughts or new or others’ reflections on you, but you just being and accepting and loving away. You just feel this warm sense of, “yeah, that’s me.” Now you’re not always gonna love you. You’re not always gonna have those moments when you think you’re doing amazingly great because you have to find ways of how to improve yourself. That’s what we’re here for. Each day we strive to be a better self, but as you’re striving to get better and you’re opening up that path back to deepening your self love just get back to your core of self – your core of what it feels like to just be being an existence. Embrace your connection with nature. Embrace your connection with with people. Embrace your connection with strangers. Embrace your connection with those you love and accept that the love for others is just going to look different, just like the love for yourself at times just looks different. Sometimes it looks super duper exciting, and bright, and full of color, and sometimes we’re going through moments where your love of yourself is not so colorful, where you’re just still questioning, “where am I? What do I want to do?” But that’s okay. That’s part of this development called life. That’s part of us growing to be our best selves each day, but yet loving the heck out of ourselves.


I know this is one of those blogs where I’m not going so straight into the points and all these things, but this was just a conversation literally that I’m having with myself that I’m inviting you in to. Let me know what your thoughts are. Let me know what connects most with you. Let me know how does this make you feel, and how do you feel about your self love? What’s your development going like? What is your journey of self love looking like? Let me know all of the above in the comments section! Until next time, be au-mazing in your thoughts, in your words, and in your actions.


This is a transcription of The Dr. Ali Griffith Show. If you’d like to listen to this episode and others you can do so at You can also watch episodes if you prefer visuals at



Check out some of my other recent blog posts:


3 Au-mazing Tips on How to Mind Your Business

Autism and Bullying: 3 Au-mazing Tips to Protect Your Child

3 Au-mazing Tips for School Wins

3 Au-mazing Tips on How to Mind Your Business

So today I wanted to talk a little about minding your business. Mind your business actually was a topic that was brought up before for the Power House of Four with three other au-mazing ladies that we have found each other in the personal development space. We had this show where “mind your business” just came up and it was a hot topic. So I’m like, you know what, let’s revisit that and now let’s add that Dr. Ali spin on it.


The concept came from being into everyone else’s business more than you are on your own. You know, some of you who love to help, help, help others, and then when it comes to doing your own stuff you’re like, “I have no more energy. I have no more power. There’s nothing left inside of me. I’m just going to take a nap.” I’m one of those because as a servant leader, it’s so, so important for me and I actually enjoy helping others. It’s what I live, breathe and just get excited about. It’s like hearing that you need help and “how can I support you?” is always my response. I’m thinking initially that that was what I needed to do to feel better about myself. I guess I helped myself through whatever downward spiral or whatever of rabbit hole I was in. There’s nothing like helping others to make you feel better. I was actually telling a client one of that that the other night when she was asking, um, how do I feel better? I was like, “help others!”


You know, there’s something about helping those that have less, the less fortunate ones. That’s the reason I have my nonprofit Smart Fit Fam. When I’m working with families with kids with special needs or I’m working with autism, it just makes me feel more grateful. But while I’m doing that, I’m, I’m minding my business and I need you to think about that right now as you’re helping others.


Are you putting in the same amount of energy, time and money into yours as you do for others? I mean, you’ve seen me jump in a plane to go to Lisa Nichols events or Steve Harvey’s event, or my different coaches in different ways supporting them. But am I also investing that time and money into myself, into my business, into my podcast The Dr. Ali Griffith Show (subscribe!), into this Mompreneurs on Fire 2.0 live event (get tickets!). The answer is initially no, but somehow I found the way. So let me let you know a little bit about how I found the way.


Tip #1: Be clear on what you want.

First I had to learn that if I wanted something I had to be clear on exactly what it is that I want, and if I wasn’t clear to surround myself with others that were moving in the same direction. So even though it may not have looked like I was minding my business, it was actually the behind the scenes building up the infrastructure, then seeing how it’s run for when I do my own. So it actually was minding my business still. It was just a strategic manner of supporting others while learning in preparation for where I was going. Now many of us don’t see us doing that and we don’t actually see the next five years or 10 years when we’re in the actual process. One of my gifts is the ability to see beyond the immediate, and as I’m supporting others, I support myself. As I’m helping my different coaches with either a live event, now I’m doing my live event and now I have some of the basic infrastructures of the back end of doing a live event and the front end of doing a live event from helping others. So it’s a way of still moving towards your dreams, minding your business from the back end side. So look at how you can now find a way that you can support someone else. That support can be helping in the same room, get coaching and being in alignment of someone else that is five to 10 steps ahead of you so that you are still always learning the process of where you want to go.  That’s why you have to get clear on where you want to go. If you’re not clear on that, set up a time for us to talk one quick coaching session with me and we’ll get you clarity at


Tip #2: Focus less on what others are doing.

The second thing we want to do is we want to focus less on what others are doing. I like to call this putting my blinders on. A lot of us are very focused on what our friends are doing, what our peers are doing, what other moms are doing. Being a parent of a child with special needs, I had to stop looking sideways because every time I look sideways, I would realize that I am not in the same line with them. I’d probably behind! Zachary’s language development was always behind, his cognitive development is behind. I shouldn’t even say behind, it’s on his own time, right? But if I compare it to other 13 year olds, he’s not functioning at the same level as another 13 year old. He may be functioning at a 9 or 10 year old level. And by stopping myself from comparing it to others, I had to start learning to mind my own business. My business at that time was helping Zachary to be the best of him. It still is. It required me to stop looking right and stop looking left. I know some of you guys do that with me. I’m being blatantly honest, I have friends that may see the book, they may see me speaking, that means seeing all these things on the outside and being like “Ooh, I want to do that!” or “I’m not at that level so I’m just not gonna do it.” And I’m always like, “don’t look at me! You don’t know where I started from. You don’t know what I did. You don’t know what I’m still doing. Just focus on you. And if you’re looking at me, look at me in other words of how can I learn and grow? What can I borrow, use, ask for, create and then modify?”  Focus on how is it that you can take what your dream is, your vision, your passion, your parenting to your own pace and your own level with the influence of others. We don’t want to be looking sideways, because when I look sideways, it slows me down for the forward movement.


I want you to realize how that impacts your business, whether it’s your personal business, your parenting business, and or your entrepreneurship business. I can’t wait to speak more about this at Mompreneurs on Fire 2.0, which is my two day live event happening March 28-29 2020 with mompreneurs or other aspiring mompreneurs who are gathering together to ignite their passion and purpose. They ignite better parenting skills and they ignite their profit and prosperity. Like how do you use that thing that you do so well and go out there and make some money off of it? It’s a time for us to be with other people who are in the forward movement so we can learn from them, but not focus on what they’re doing more than what we are doing. It’s that time where I specifically created time for us to be in alignment with where it is that we want to be as an individual, create a strategic plan, and then go out there and get it with support and accountability. That’s what that’s all about. Head over to to reserve your spot!


Tip #3: Invest in yourself.

The last thing I had to learn on, and this kind of leads into the same thing, is learning more how to invest in myself. I’m getting on a plane, investing in coaching, investing in masterminds, investing in all of these programs that have elevated my life to such an exponential level, including the ability to just jump on podcasts with you guys, or to speak, or to be an author, or to help parents. All of that required me investing in more and that’s my whole gamut towards success. It’s how I choose to use my time, my money, and my energy and learning how to maximize that in whatever aspect I have – whether I don’t have enough time, or I don’t have enough money, or I don’t have enough energy. In my head sometimes I’m saying “enough!” and that’s what you may be thinking too – “I don’t have enough. I don’t have enough money. I don’t know where I’m gonna find the time. Girl, I’m so tired. There’s nothing else I can do. That’s time, money and energy.” By the way, we all have some. We all have the ability to find some. Like if you were to say that today’s your last day and you need to find $5,000 so that you can live for another 50 years, you would go out there and make it happen, right? If you needed to know that you had to maximize this two hours so that you can now put some time into finding out what is the cure to something your mom or your son or your family may have, you use that time to create what you need to have. You’ll make that time, right? And then if you’re tired and you’re in that gym class and you just want to give up on yourself and you’re almost on the floor, but then you realize that if I worked out 15 more minutes it would make me live 15 more years – I bet your tail would get up and give yourself 15 more minutes! It’s learning how to find the importance and the why behind the creating the time, creating the money, creating the energy so that you can maximize what it is that you can get. And as for those excuses… I’m sorry, they lack, I’m not taking it. I’m not even having you give it to me. If you come to Mompreneurs on Fire 2.0, I’m going to just let you know that ain’t gonna work. I have all the excuses, and I’ve heard all the excuses, and I’ve pretty much used all of them. So we’ll be in the same boat. Maximize it for 2020.


So these are some of the things that I had to learn along the way, and I hope throughout this process that you are writing this down, that you are leaving your messages in the comments below, that you by now you’ve sent a friend over here to read this, because sometimes we just have to learn how to mind our own damn business! For more business tips and tricks, autism parenting resources, free gifts, and more, take a look around at



Check out some of my other recent blog posts for more advice!

Autism and Bullying: 3 Au-mazing Tips to Protect Your Child

3 Au-mazing Tips for School Wins

3 Au-Mazing Communication Tips for a Successful School Year

Autism and Bullying: 3 Au-mazing Tips to Protect Your Child

Hi, it’s your girl Dr. Alisha Griffith, affectionately known as “Dr. Ali.” I am your autism parenting strategist and ignite coach. I help autism moms, mompreneurs, and aspiring mompreneurs, to shift through the feelings of overwhelm, frustration, and stress, and move towards making bold, brave power moves so you can ignite the results you want and live that ultimate dream life you desire.


Today I wanted to write a little bit about bullying because October is Bullying Awareness Month. I want to give 3 important tips that you must know about bullying – and I’m saying this specifically for my autism moms, my special needs moms, but my regular parents can benefit from it also because I think we all need this information. A study that Autism Speaks did shows that 60% of children are more likely to be bullied when they have special needs as compared to 25% of children without special needs. So that means that there’s an increasing chance that our au-mazing gifts are going to be bullied sometime in their life. So what are three things that you must know to help protect them?


Tip Number 1:

You have to teach your child what bullying looks like. A lot of our kids don’t know what bullying looks like, they don’t understand the concept. So, you have to demonstrate it to them, you have to be the mean guy. You have to have pretend moments or acting time when you can show them what bullying looks like – it can be someone who wants to take your lunch from you and make you feel really bad. At the beginning of last school year Zachary came to me and said a student in his class told him that he needs to bring $5 to school and give it to him. I was like “What?? What do you mean?” He said yes, one of his friends from elementary school told him that he needs to get $5 tomorrow or else! And I said, “Or else what?” And he takes his hands and shows me that he’s going to take his hand and push him or push his face against something. So I sat down and explained to him that’s bullying, and if he does that you tell him no, that you are not going to bring him $5 tomorrow, and that your mom is going to call his mom. The key of it was letting him know that this isn’t a normal situation – you’re not supposed to bring someone money, and if someone makes you feel unsafe and if you don’t there’s a consequence, that’s a form of bullying. He didn’t know that because he’s never described this behavior before. So I had to sit down with him, and show him, and give him different scenarios.


Tip Number 2:

You want to communicate with your child. You want to keep that communication open. This is the time when you have to communicate with them and make sure they feel very comfortable coming to you to talk about it. You have to create a safe space for them because a lot of our kids aren’t sure how to say anything or what to say. So you’re gonna talk about it more often, you’re gonna show them what it looks like, and create a safe space for them. For my parents with children who are nonverbal, you still want show it to them. You still want to demonstrate that that’s not okay. Look at your child, they will be showing you discomfort with school. It’s going to be something uncomfortable for them. They may protest going to school, they may cry at certain times. They are gonna show you other signs that are saying something is going on. Stay on top of it.


Tip Number 3:

You want to make sure that you create a plan with the school. Sit and talk with the teachers and let them know “hey this is a time where other kids may want them to do something, and I want you guys to take time to either talk about it in class or take time to observe what’s happening with the students in your classroom.” Be aware when people are saying things their tone of voice, the way another child responds to things. When children are being bullied you will always see the response in their face, in their change of mood, in not being happy when it comes to school and it has nothing to do with academics. So this is a time when you have to create a plan with the school so that you can have that on going communication. Check in on them, I can’t say this enough. You gotta check in, you gotta keep communication open, you gotta make sure that you are a safe place they can come to speak to about. The next thing you want to do is make sure that you’re talking to the teachers. If they have a system in place that when bullying is occurring how will they respond to it? Is it a conversation that they’ll have? Are there regulations that they have in the school? Are there consequences that are going to happen as a result of it? Create it, because it differs every place you go. I can’t tell you one thing because every school and every system has different anti-bullying rules. But they key of it all that I’m always going to come back to is: communication. It’s making sure you have a safe space, and of course teaching the children what bullying looks like and doesn’t look like, and emphasizing how it makes a person feel. No one ever wants to feel uncomfortable or like their rights are being violated. The bully doesn’t want to feel it either, so they need to understand more about it. Our schools need to speak about it more so that our children are more comfortable identifying it and knowing what the system is, and what are the things we do when it does occur.


Has your au-mazing gift ever dealt with bullying? Feel free to share your stories in the comments below. It’s good to start conversations around this topic so we can help educate others so they can start having these conversations with their children.



For more tips on autism parenting, check out some of my most recent blog posts!

3 Au-mazing Tips for School WINS!

3 Au-mazing Communication Tips for a Successful School Year

What is Your Parenting Style (Quiz)