• On Jul 14, 2021
    Rudi from IN Asked Please note that experiences, policies, pricing and other offerings are subject to change and may have changed since the date of this answer.

    We are bringing 5 kids we recently adopted. They have never been to Disney. Are there any special things kids who have had rough lives that we can do with them to have an extra experience? They have had several traumatic experiences thank you!

    Hi Rudi,

    Welcome to planDisney, and greetings from a former Hoosier, fellow adoptive mama, and mama of five! I love hearing that we have so much in common, and it brings me much joy to be able to share some tips to help your Walt Disney World Resort vacation be as magical as possible! I see that your visit is just around the riverbend, so I'll get right to it!

    First, my number one piece of advice for you would be to allow plenty of wiggle room in your schedule. While you'll be visiting The Most Magical Place on Earth, it can also be a bit overwhelming at times for Mouseketeers who have been through trauma. I'd encourage you to arrive at the parks early so that you can enjoy several attractions first thing in the morning with very little waiting, then build in some breaks throughout the day. Whether you make some dining reservations ahead of time, use the handy dandy My Disney Experience mobile app to order your meals, bring some snacks with you for some planned downtime, or head back to your Disney Resort hotel to rest or swim in the middle of the day, making sure everyone is well-rested and well-fed will be a big key to a magical time. Also, I realize that adoption and autism are not the same, but as a mama familiar with both, I'd also suggest checking out the Attraction Details Guide (which will be helpful if any of your kiddos are triggered by loud noises, have issues with darkness, or have other sensory concerns) as well as the Guide for Guests with Cognitive Disabilities, especially pages 29-31 which highlight areas in the parks which would be helpful if anyone needs a break.

    As far as adding something extra to your trip, I'd recommend a Capture Your Moment photography session to celebrate your new family! Or what about a visit to Tri-Circle-D Ranch where any little ones could enjoy a pony ride, bigger kiddos could experience horseback riding, and you could all visit Cinderella's Ponies together? There are lots of various experiences in the Enchanting Extras Collection that could add a bit of extra pixie dust to your visit! There are also complimentary celebration or My First Visit buttons available at Guest Relations locations, which will allow Cast Members (and even some Guests!) to celebrate with you, but I'll leave that up to you to decide whether the extra attention would be a positive or possibly triggering thing.

    I'm so excited for your family's Walt Disney World Resort adventure, Rudi, and can't wait for you to continue to bond with your kiddos as you experience Disney magic together. If there's anything else we can help you with as you're thinking through the details of your trip, please don't hesitate to come see us again here at planDisney. I'm wishing you and your entire family a truly magical vacation full of memories to cherish for years to come!

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Meet the Panelist: Missy, Virginia

Hi!  I'm Missy, a homeschool mom originally from Indiana, but recently transplanted to Virginia.  With a husband and five kids, I understand what busy family life is all about and how important it is to get away and create magical moments with your loved ones.  I also believe planning is half the fun, so I'd be honored to help you plan your Walt Disney World Resort vacation! Learn More About Missy

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