Buying socks for my son with #Autism

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Something that I would think, many of you can relate to is the struggle of buying socks for your child with #Autism and sensory processing issues. 

I’ll be really honestly with you here, socks have been the bane of my existence for many years now. 

All three of my boys on the #Autism spectrum, struggle with socks for various reasons.  However, Emmett is by far the most sensitive and subsequently the most difficult to buy socks for. 

I would guess that this is absolutely something that many people take for granted and it’s seems so simple. 

There have been times that we have spent $30 or more, simply buying different styles, brands, textures and fits, in order to maybe find one style that Emmett’s little feet will tolerate. 

Yesterday we had to make our dreaded run to the local Taget and visit their wall of socks once again.

This time I was armed with hope and tons of positive thinking.. Whether or not it was enough to bring us positive results, remains to be seen. 

Emmett seems to do best with socks that offer a great deal of compression. 

He tends to prefer the tube sock style the most.  He likes the socks to pull up as high as possible.  A huge no no when it comes to Emmett and his socks seems to be the seam along the toes. He’s extremely particular about that and often complains that they hurt. 

You can actually buy seamless socks online but they are pretty expensive and for my family, cost is unfortunately, prohibitive.

This trip, we selected 2 different types of socks, with Emmett’s help.  We have found that involving him in these types of things, can lead to better results.  He tends to be more excited about things he’s more directly involved in.

We purchased what seem like rather tight fitting tube socks.  We also picked up a few festive pairs out of the $1 section.  Sometime Emmett will tolerate the socks better if they have a picture he likes. 

In this case, we got a few different pictures, mostly Christmas themed.

He helped to select the socks and even tried to read the lables and make sure they matched up, size wise  to his shoes.  After examining his options, he seemed happy with what we picked out. 

When we arrived home, he even tried a pair of the tube socks on and wore them for most of the day. 

So far so good. 

Have you experienced this type of challenge with your child? Whether it is an issue with socks or other items of clothing, how do you find detailed clothes that you child will tolerate?






Rob Gorski

Full time, work from home single Dad to my 3 amazing boys. Oh...and creator fo this blog. :-)
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One easy way to do your own compression socks is to have him wear two pairs of socks of the same size.  Not only does it provide some compression but it also thickens them and decreases sensitivity to pants, shoes, and the general environment.  The second pair of socks can also be wool socks since they are often thicker than regular socks but can have more support.  That way if he has a problem with the texture of wool, he can have his regular socks on with the wool over to get the benefits of both.


My son has autism, but he was never much of a tactile kid, at least not with clothes. So we never had much issue, except he prefers pull on pants to those with snaps like jeans. But I think that has more to do with his fine motor skill and hand strength issues, not the sensory part of it.


@mehmig thanks for sharing that. I think it’s so important for the world to see that even though my kids and your son all have autism, they are not the same. They are each individual, with their own unique needs and preferences.
Thank you for helping to illustrate that. 🙂

E The Third Glance

I am also extremely picky about socks. For me, they are the barrier between my sensitive skin and the world. I *always* wear socks. They have to be pulled up all the way and have a good texture on the inside. I can’t wear sports socks, because they’re scratchy. I far prefer socks with patterns. Thick ones are good, but I can deal with thin ones. Must be mid-shin level or higher, though. I can’t deal with ankle socks.


@E The Third Glance that’s really interesting. Emmett is the same way. He can’t stand ankle or no show socks.
Thanks for sharing.


I’ve found it easier to wear plain white socks that I can flip inside out so the seam doesn’t bother my toes. 🙂 I wear athletic socks mostly because of the low seam. I like tube socks too but I dont like when they fall down so I don’t wear them as often as ankle socks or ‘crew’. I can’t wear festive socks usually without needing to wear a tolerable pair underneath and inside out.


@Silachan Emmett’s the same way. He hates when they fall down. We have also been known to flip is socks inside out as well. Thank you for sharing. 🙂