It’s a challenge for any parent to help their child learn to drive. For the parent of a child with extra issues, whether it’s ADHD, anxiety, or autism, the challenge can be even greater. Gina Gallagher, co-author with her sister Patricia Konjoian of the book Shut Up About Your Perfect Kid, recently shared a post on their blog of the same name about helping her anxiety-ridden daughter learn to drive.

Ms. Gallagher approaches the challenges of raising an “imperfect kid” with both humor and love, and her post on teaching her daughter to drive is no exception. She wraps up her post with seven imperfect parent driving survival tips, all of which work well with any new driver. Among the tips are:

  • Start in the driveway. Parked. This excellent piece of advice came from education consultant, Cynthia DeAngelis, who instructed us to practice starting the car in the driveway. While in park, we also practiced switching from brake to gas pedal, increasing speed, and signaling. By the time we were actually ready to drive, my daughter had her footwork down and we had logged 40 hours of practice (just kidding).
  • Find an empty parking lot. On my daughter’s first real run, I took her to an empty industrial park. The company that once operated there made a wise decision to move as we surely would have killed all their employees.
  • Visit graveyards. They provide an excellent venue for your child to practice turning and driving on narrow roads. More importantly, it’s impossible for your child to kill people who have already died. #winning

Be sure to read the full article for a little help in how to teach your child to drive and a little smile about the challenges we all face as parents.

Photo © 2012 by Alex Proimos under Creative Commons license.