These days, most children can be diagnosed with autism early on. But that was not true 10-15 years ago.
If your teen or young adult has just been diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), it can be a relief to find that there is a reason for their differences, and that there is a community that can understand and support them.
One you start learning about autism, you’ll see there are many services and programs that can help your child!
Here’s what you can do:
Be supportive. Make sure they know this is a condition and is not their fault.
Nurture their interests and talents. Help them do more of the things they enjoy and can do well.
Help educate your community about autism so it can be understanding.
Connect with the programs and people in your area who support people with autism. Search for resources in the Exceptional Lives Resource Directory. (Click to open it in a new tab on your screen) Check the box for your child's age group and "Autism Spectrum Disorders" in the Primary Diagnosis section.
Watch the following video, created by a high school student to educate other teens about autism: "A Teen’s Guide to Autism" - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p9-l19CKISg&feature=youtu.be
Click on the box below to learn more:
If you want to learn more, look through these helpful resources.
Click on the titles or web address, and they'll open in a new tab or window. Remember you can print this out and look at them later! (That's why we wrote out the web addresses.)
Autism in the Teen Years: What to Expect, How to Help
Short article from the Interactive Autism Network
Transitioning Teens with ASD: Resources and timeline planning for adult living
This was created for Massachusetts, but has a lot of good information that can apply to people from any state. It covers education planning, independent living skills, employment, healthcare, public benefits and getting guardianship. (74 pages)
Puberty and Adolescence Resource: A Guide for Parents
This booklet helps you learn how to talk to your child about things like body changes, hygiene, and public vs. private behavior. It also includes practical tips for safety (running off, aggression, internet use, etc.)and much more. (31 pages)
Video: A Teen's Guide to Autism
- This video was created by a high school student to educate other teens about autism. It's message is about learning to be sensitive about the quirks and challenges of those with ASD. (14 min.)