Christmas Gifts for my Autistic Adult Daughter

It’s always been hard to figure out what to get my daughter, Bethany for Christmas.

She’s autistic and also experienced a brain injury during brain tumor surgery.

Now that she’s a 20 year old adult, it’s even harder to pick out gifts because she still likes little kids stuff, yet every once in a while she surprises us by acting more her age!!

It seems to be difficult for her to express her likes and dislikes or what she actually wants!

Any time we ask her what she wants for Christmas or her birthday, all she will say is presents.

When we ask her what kind of presents, she says big ones or a lot of them!!

But this year whenever I ask her what kind of presents she wants, she says, toys!!

Once she even got specific and said she wanted a horn!

Well, you better believe she’s getting a horn for Christmas this year!!

Over the years, I have developed three methods for trying to find gifts Bethany will hopefully like!

1. I get on Google Images and search for toys. Better yet, if Bethany has given me the slightest hint of anything more specific she might like, I’ll search for that, show her the results and have her point to the one she likes best.

2. When choosing gifts for Bethany, I like to think back on activities or outings that she has enjoyed over the past few months, then try to find gifts based on those experiences.

3. And Last, but not least, we sometimes just resort to the trial and error method and hope that she will like what we have gotten her!

Without further adieu, below is a list of items we have already purchased for Bethany and also a few that we are hoping to be able to get for her either for Christmas or at some point in the near future!

*(The following links are affiliate links.)

1. When we took Bethany to the Ithaca Sciencenter last fall, she really enjoyed playing around with the giant Lite Brite they had there. So we’re thinking she might like this smaller version of it. If she does, we’ll go ahead and order a design add on pack in the future.

Lite Brite

2. Bethany has been enjoying Santa to the fullest this year! In fact, she has actually gone to visit the real Santa twice already!! This year, her infatuation began when she discovered the life size singing Santa at Walmart. So, when my husband saw a Santa figurine very similar to this one, he snatched it up! We aren’t really sure she will like it, but based on her love of Santa, we think he just might be a hit!

Santa Figurine

3. Bethany loves playing games, especially dice and card games! She is obsessed with her Farkle dice game, currently, so when I saw this Farkle card game while searching through Amazon’s toy section, I put it in my cart! I have a hunch that she will enjoy it!

Farkle Flip card game.

4, Bethany loves matching games and as I mentioned before, card games. So based on her love of card games and the fact that I know she enjoys putting her excellent matching skills to work, I believe she will have fun playing the I Spy Match card game.

The following Items are all things Bethany has actually specifically asked for:

5. Just last night, Bethany asked me to pick up a pair of red headphones when I went shopping. Unfortunately, all I could find were a pair of black ones. She was okay with that, but I think I’ll get her a red pair for Christmas. Obviously, it’s not often that she asks for specific items like that and I want her to have what she really wants!
Red headphones

6. I have no idea where Bethany got the idea of wanting a bulb horn or why she even wants one, but shockingly, she asked for a horn the other day!! I wasn’t sure what kind of horn she meant, so I showed her lots of pictures on Google and had her point to the one she wanted! I didn’t realize it was a bike horn when I ordered it and I would rather have gotten her one that isn’t a bike horn because she doesn’t have a bike! However, I don’t think she will care or even know that it’s supposed to be attached to a bike! It’s the one she wants so it’s the one I got for her and who knows, maybe someday we can get her a bike to put it on!
Bulb horn

7. Bethany knows that we’re planning to move to a new house someday and she decided that when we do she wants a new bed! Just as I always do when I need more specific information from her,  I searched Google and showed her some pictures of beds! She picked out the bunk bed below! We can’t afford to get this bed for her for Christmas, but I would love to be able to get it or one like it by the time we do move! And since she is not actually expecting a new bed for Christmas, she won’t be disappointed when she doesn’t see it under the tree on Christmas morning!
bunk bed


One last gift I would like to get for Bethany.

8. Bethany loves playing basketball with her Flash Club friends at the YMCA! But she is just too tiny to be able to get the ball way up high into a conventional height basket. The basket at the Y is lowered so she and her friends can experience success playing basketball. Malcolm and I thought Bethany would really enjoy having her very own adjustable height basketball hoop to practice with at home! Since there is no place suitable to set it up where we currently live, we don’t plan on getting it for her for Christmas. This gift will have to wait until after we move to our new house and have an actual driveway where we can set it up! And, once again, since she is also not expecting to get it, she won’t be disappointed when it isn’t included in her Christmas gifts!

Adjustable basketball hoop

What do you plan on getting your kids for Christmas?

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Thanks so much for stopping by!

*This post may contain affiliate links. Thanks in advance if you should decide to purchase an item through one of our links at no extra cost to you. 100% of all commissions earned from sales go directly toward providing a better quality of life for our daughter, Bethany, an autistic and  brave brain tumor survivor !

If you have a minute, please check out our Amazon Store where I have put together a list of my favorite books and resources and Bethany’s favorite games and products and our Etsy Shop where you can instantly download vintage book illustrations and prints of Bethany’s paintings!

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