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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lurk.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lurk">: I know they have special needs passes and all that. That's not what I'm interested in. I want to know how your ASD child did with the park environment in general. What age they were when you went, how they liked the rides, did the characters freak them out, etc.?<br><br>
We're <i>considering</i> braving Disney next year, but ONLY if the grandparents can go with us (we're no fools). Anyway, I know they have Disney books specific to autism and all that. I just want to hear from moms who have personally experienced it how their child did at the park.<br><br><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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Not trying to be a killjoy, but your son is 3? I'd hesitate to take a 3-year-old NT kid... have you started with smaller amusement parks? The lines at Disney are murder. My daughter HATED Disney at 3 years old, and I'm continually told what an "easy" child I have.<br><br>
Sorry to be such a downer. If you decide to go and want advice, I'll be happy to come up with some!
 

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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"> Killjoy. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/wink1.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="wink1"> No, we won't be taking him until he's at least 4. I went when I was 4-ish and loved it. Hey you wanna talk insane? Let me tell you about insane...my bf and her dh took their dd to disney for a week.....<i>when she was 15 months old</i>. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/dizzy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Dizzy">: <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/dizzy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Dizzy">: <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/dizzy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Dizzy">: Yeah. I didn't get it, either.<br><br>
We may wait until he's older and can appreciate it more, yes. I dunno. Part of the reason we want the gparents to come is so we can leave ds with them and take off and go be kids ourselves for a day at Universal and ride rollercoasters. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/bag.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Bag">:
 

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We went to Disney when my daughter was 5 weeks old (my son was 28 months old). It was a full family trip (sis and her family plus my parents) and honestly it was a blast. Even at 28 months old there was so much for my son to do and he enjoyed it. He had no dx at the time (just sensory issues) but did well.<br><br>
For Spring Break this year we went to Sea World and Legoland. Sea World was great minus a few meltdowns but those could easily be chocked up to exhaustion. We used the line pass at Legoland and it went much better. Again at the time my son didn't have a dx so we couldn't use the line pass for the roller coaster he wanted to go on - he had 3 meltdowns in 20 minutes while waiting in line. Other than that he loved it and talks about going back. Now that we have a dx for him and he could benefit from a line pass as well I think it would be an even better trip.<br><br>
We rented strollers for both of the kids and ensured that we took lots of breaks and they were constantly fed - meals, snacks, drinks. So it can be doable and it can be enjoyable depending on the kiddo. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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Well, I only have one thing to say...if you come to Disney, STOP BY. I'm near jacksonville <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngbiggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="orange big grin"><br><br>
I have not been with Elijah yet. We florida folk can get cheap passes, but I know when things get too colorful and joyful he sort of shuts off..so I think we need to wait until he is older.
 

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we took ryan to six flags at 7 weeks and on... we had season passes..<br><br>
We also took him to six flags at 3yrs and he loved it... especially the stuff that spun in circles... he loved the roller coasters and the water...he did get a bit over stimulated every now and then and I would go nurse him and he would settle down and want to go back... we went for 3 days
 

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I'm interested in hearing about this too. Gabe is madly in love with Mickey Mouse and begs and pleads pretty much every day to go to Disneyland so he can meet him. I was thinking of doing it on his spring break next year which will put him at 7yo. I have never heard of the SN passes, does this mean that Gabe and parent can get front of the line priveleges? Can the whole party do it or just the SN child and adult? ( We are going with Grandma and Grandpa too + older brother).<br><br>
Namaste,<br><br>
Michelle
 

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Are you talking FL or CA?<br><br>
I don't have an autism spectrum child but I do have one very sound defensive, vestibularly insecure, tactile-defensive highly sensitive SPD kid -- and he's done Disneyland twice. Once with dh and SIL when he was about 30 months old. He tolerated it, AFTER they bought ear plugs for him. But he didn't do any rides.<br><br>
We went to Disney LAND last December - it was a full trip with me, dh, our 5 1/2 and 2 1/2 year old kids, grandma, SIL, and dh's aunt. In other words, 2+ adults for every kid. The trip really was for dh and his sister - they're both Disney freaks, uh sorry, fans, and really wanted to go. We chose Disneyland because it was a lot closer (and cheaper to where we live). Ds (5 1/2 at the time) did 5 rides:<br>
-Some sort of driving thing with dh<br>
-Bumper cars (in the CA Adventure park)<br>
-The merry go round<br>
-Pinocchio<br>
-Winnie-the-Pooh<br><br>
He did fine on the 1st 3, but Pinocchio and Winnie the Pooh were DISASTERS - ds and dd were both TERRIFIED. The rides go into dark tunnels, Pinocchio has scary music and one or two scary scenes. Pooh doesn't really but it has one weird 'dream scene' that freaked both of them out - especially since they'd already experienced Pinocchio.<br><br>
Ds did much better than I would have thought with the sound and all the people. He was clearly at his limit - he wouldn't ride on the train around the park because he was afraid of the noise, and ordinarily he can be talked into it. But he got through the days. It just took him a LONG LONG time to fall asleep after all that stimulation. Oh, and the fireworks at the end of the day were way too much for him. We could see/hear them from out hotel, and he spent that time cowering in the hotel room. We were in the pool one evening when they started and he majorly freaked out.<br><br>
He had a blast however, at the <a href="http://www.netinteraction.com/thomas/DecCAAdventure.htm" target="_blank">California adventure park</a> - they had some huge slides that my kids must have spent 2 hours going down, lots of physical stuff to do. They also had a <a href="http://www.netinteraction.com/thomas/DecCAAdvenFireBoat.htm" target="_blank">fire boat</a> to play on that ds would have spent all day at if we'd let him!<br><br>
We also went to Legoland - and I'm in LOVE with that park for little kids. It's a great park for kids under about 8, I'm thinking. It was MUCH quieter than Disney (not so much loud piped in music - guess who's also sound defensive in our family <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/wink1.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="wink1">?), has rides that my kids loved (<a href="http://www.netinteraction.com/thomas/Legoland%20Fire.htm" target="_blank">a fire fighting one</a>, a helicopter one, a driving school for kids 3 and older), lots of areas to run, a play area specifically for the under 3 crowd (but ds enjoyed it as well), legos to play with, and <a href="http://www.netinteraction.com/thomas/LegolandWaterplay.htm" target="_blank">lots of water play</a>.<br><br>
Probably more than you wanted to know - I guess your decision depends on how your child does with lots and lots and lots of visual and auditory input, how he does with crowds, and how much energy YOU'VE got!
 

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Yes, SN kids (ASD for sure - I'd assume same for many others) can get passes that will put them in the front of the line. NO LINE WAITING! God had to repay us for all the late toilet training, excessive meltdowns, etc. somehow, right? Apparently, he made a deal with Disney. Or is that the devil? Wait...now I'm confused <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>wytchywoman</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/7948271"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I'm interested in hearing about this too. Gabe is madly in love with Mickey Mouse and begs and pleads pretty much every day to go to Disneyland so he can meet him. I was thinking of doing it on his spring break next year which will put him at 7yo. I have never heard of the SN passes, does this mean that Gabe and parent can get front of the line priveleges? Can the whole party do it or just the SN child and adult? ( We are going with Grandma and Grandpa too + older brother).<br><br>
Namaste,<br><br>
Michelle</div>
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Yeah, if you get a note from their doctor verifying their dx, you can get a special pass that moves you to the front of the line. I *think* the pass is only good for the sn child and their parent/caregiver/escort/what have you.
 

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I did some reading about the Guest Access Card at Disney a few months back when we were debating between Disneyland and Sea World. This site had the best information: <a href="http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=595713" target="_blank">http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=595713</a><br><br>
Its good for six people (child plus 5 more) and how it is used seems to vary from person to person operating the attraction.<br><br>
In Legoland they gave us a time to come back and go to the exit to enter - if a ride had a 20 minute wait they gave us a time of 20 minutes. So we didn't get to go right away but we got to avoid standing in the line. Disney does something similar as one of the options.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>GC_Mom</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/7947616"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">We went to Disney when my daughter was 5 weeks old (my son was 28 months old). It was a full family trip (sis and her family plus my parents) and honestly it was a blast. Even at 28 months old there was so much for my son to do and he enjoyed it. He had no dx at the time (just sensory issues) but did well.</div>
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me too! except i think my daughter was 9 weeks. we took the grandparents and everyone (incl my son) had a great time.
 

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My ASD son was 5, my dd was 4, my youngest at the time was 1.5yrs. We expected to suffer as parents, but hoped the kids enjoyed it. The kids loved it and so did we. We will find a way (financially) to go again some day.<br>
We stayed at an rv camp (but rented a cabin) nearby instead of a hotel. This gave us a bit more space, a 24 hour pool, a kitchen. We had breakfast at the cabin and one meal (late lunch or early dinner) at the cabin. Keeping meals closer to normal was HUGE for us. Also we put our ASD child in a stroller and got the wheelchair pass for him. He walks/runs fine but is flatfooted and so at the time his legs "wore out" easily. Also if he was "super stimmy" staying in the shady stroller (and strapped in) just worked better for him. We never ever chew gum here- except at Disney. He gets a bit oral under stress and gum was useful. Sunglasses helped. Ear plugs are useful for some kids.<br>
We had a great time.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>kchoffmann</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/7949863"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Yes, SN kids (ASD for sure - I'd assume same for many others) can get passes that will put them in the front of the line. NO LINE WAITING!</div>
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Holy carp, I didn't know that! And here we've been waiting in line.<br><br>
We live within an hour from DisneyLAND and have season passes. I don't remember when we took DS the first time, but he was pretty young. He was a little freaked out by the characters the first time, but we watched from afar and it was fine. He was very intrigued still. I don't think we did many rides, and we had the stroller for when he got pooped out, but overall it was fun.<br><br>
Now, though, it's always fun. He'll be 5 in August. He does several rides, drives the Autopia with dh, rides the train & monorail, takes pictures with the characters and we also go into California Adventure where they have a Playhouse Disney show that he loves (and was able to participate in last time!) There's more that we do that I can't think of.<br><br>
We love Legoland too. TONS of stuff for him and our younger DD to do. Lots of activity areas, a huge water area, and nice easy rides for the young 'uns. SeaWorld is actually awesome too, they have huge activity areas as well. We're lucky, we live within an hour of all three of these so we go often and he's used to the whole experience.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Finch</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/7947474"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Hey you wanna talk insane? Let me tell you about insane...my bf and her dh took their dd to disney for a week.....<i>when she was 15 months old</i>. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/dizzy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Dizzy">: <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/dizzy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Dizzy">: <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/dizzy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Dizzy">:</div>
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I think that is the age when we took ds (who also does have sn). Though I have to say, we did only one day at actual Disney.<br><br>
I will have to find my after-Disney post somewhere on these boards because I gave a rundown of everything. I didn't post anything regarding his sn because we did not find them to be a big issue in his experience, though he was young so who knows.
 

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Hmmmm...We actually just got back from Disneyland in California. My kids are not SN, and it was very intense for both of them. The rides in Fantasyland like Pinnochio and Mr. Toad's Wild Ride, etc. were terrifying for both kids. Both were in tears at the end of them. Heck, they were pretty intense for me too - kind of like being inside of a bad dream cartoon. Also, the new ride called Space Blasters or something was pretty scary with mean aliens jumping out. I would not take a child on that one again.<br><br>
That being said, there were plenty of rides that they both loved, like Small World and the merry go round. They also loved seeing Goofy. If I were going again, I'd be VERY careful what rides I took them on. Taking an autistic child...I don't know if I'd do it. The place is pretty bizarre. Fun, but definitely a sensory overload.
 

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we went when he was 3. It was fine really, except for one monster violent meltdown at midday near "it's a small world". Otherwise it was enjoyable.<br>
I can't believe we went though- sounds like a really daring thing to do, something I cna't believe we agreed to try.<br>
At the time, we were more worried about the car ride then the park itself. And like Disneyland, the car ride was surprisingly mostly fine, except when it was total disaster.
 

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This thread had given me such great ideas. We've avoided Disney in recent years because I can't get too tired (MS) and hate crowds, but they have a lot of accomodations for disabled people. Awesome...
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Individuation</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/7963763"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">This thread had given me such great ideas. We've avoided Disney in recent years because I can't get too tired (MS) and hate crowds, but they have a lot of accomodations for disabled people. Awesome...</div>
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Hey man...you can go!! This is not meant to sound rude or evil or whatever...but maybe you could ride one of those motorized scooter dealies? The father of the family I nannied for had MS. He got exacerbations but his remissions were just as frequent. He used a cane and sometimes a wheelchair during his exacerbations. It seemed to help a lot.<br><br>
If you wanna do disney, I say go. Tie a hot pink balloon to your scooter and burn up the park!
 

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<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>cchrissyy</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/7952507"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">surprisingly mostly fine, except when it was total disaster.</div>
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This is funny. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"> Pretty much sums up most of my days.<br><br>
Just a warning that I've heard mixed things about the Guest Access stuff - it sounds like it really depends on who happens to be working the desk that day. Bring whatever documentation you can from a doctor/therapist. Also, they are weird about bringing in your own food which can be hard for GF/CF people or other on special diets.
 
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