A Preview–What Your Child on the Spectrum Really Needs: Advice From 12 Autistic Adults

Stories That Need To Be Told

I love listening to stories. The idea for this book came from my passion for storytelling and a special interest in the authority of personal experience. I studied the personal essay in graduate school and have continued using the transformative power of storytelling in a variety of different ways. My interest in autistic storytelling comes from living alongside my autistic brother and son.

When my son was diagnosed with autism at four, my husband and I sought the advice of every “expert” we were recommended to: doctors, therapists, psychologists, etc. But there was one problem with these professionals that left a big gap in our pursuit for the best support for our son–they weren’t autistic. I grew tired of the media stories about what I should or should not be doing as a parent of an autistic child. Avoid milk! Extra doses of vitamins! Try this really expensive supplement! Don’t eat broccoli in your first trimester! So…the broccoli reprimand I haven’t actually heard yet, but you get the idea. When I first started this project, I wanted to find out what autistic people thought of the overwhelming amount of therapy, behavioral, and diet advice out there. I soon realized this is where I should have started.

7 Reasons Why the Neurodiversity Movement Matters to Parents

neurodiversity for parents

How invested are you in the neurodiversity movement? The societal shift to treat autism (along with a variety of atypical neurological conditions) as a difference rather than a disease has improved autism acceptance, thereby potentially improving the quality of life for individuals on the spectrum. But it would be a mistake to think this movement is only for autistic people. Parents too have several important reasons to embrace neurodiversity.

Autism Interview #47: Frank Ludwig on Autism Appreciation

Frank L. Ludwig is an Irish author of several short stories, plays, essays, and poems. He writes about autism appreciation, among other topics and believes “Autism is not only a natural but an indispensable part of human neurological diversity.” This week Frank shared with us his experience receiving a late diagnosis, and advice on how to not only respect individuals on the spectrum, but learn to appreciate the autism’s presence in society.

Ways to Connect with the Autistic Community

Engaging with individuals on the spectrum should be a foundational part of any parent’s plan to support their autistic child. It’s relatively easy and comfortable to access resources from doctors, therapists, and other parents of children on the spectrum. Communicating with or accessing resources from people who are #actuallyautistic is sometimes, unfortunately, an afterthought; however, there is plenty of information easily available from autistic sources for anyone interested.

Autism Interview #22: Rudy Simone on The International Aspergirl Society

Rudy Simone

Ms. Simone is the author of 6 books, founder and creator of www.Help4aspergers.com, and the founder and President of The International Aspergirl® Society. Credited with coining the term “Aspergirls”, Simone, along with Liane Holliday Willey, helped bring female Aspergers to the forefront of cultural awareness. She created the first “Table of Female AS Traits” now widely used by doctors everywhere to help identify AS in women and girls.

Simone gives presentations and webinars for professional and personal development and is also a composer, musician, recording artist and engineer, and actor. This week Ms. Simone shared with us her perspective on autism, dating, and her work with the International Aspergirl Society.

Autism Interview #16: Emma Dalmayne on Neurodiverse Parenting and Autism Advocacy

Emma Dalmayne

Emma Dalmayne is an Autistic and Autism Advocate and activist from the United Kingdom who speaks out against all Autistic mistreatments. She has published several articles and books aimed at helping individuals on the spectrum, and her advocacy work has been featured in the Guardian. Emma is also a home educator to her children who are also on the Autistic spectrum.

This week Emma shared some of her background growing up on the autism spectrum, her feelings about receiving a late diagnosis, and how she advocates for others on the spectrum today.