Autism For Parents

31 Mar 06

Autism resources for parents

Filed under: Autism — Brett @ 1649

Part of what I'm hoping to accomplish with this site is to provide a good starting point for parents trying to learn more about autism, with information and links to a wide variety of resources – both on and offline. I've established a series of pages that will list and discuss some of these resources.

Blogs:

Blog, I believe, represent probably the single largest resource of current and ongoing information for parents of autistic children. Of course, finding a blog (or blogs) that help you personally can be a challenge. The sheer volume of blogs and diversity of perspectives and opinions can get to be overwhelming. I know that there are many, many excellent blogs on the subject of autism that I've not yet discovered that others read everyday, but I just don't have the time to seek them all out myself.

To help parents new to autism get a good start on finding autism blogs that may help them, I've set up two pages for links to blogs: Blogs by Autistics, and Blogs by Parents. If you know of a blog that you think should be listed here – or if you write one you'd like others to know about – please let me know.

Books: Even with everything available on-line, books remain an excellent source of information for parents. My intent for listing books is to provide a list of books that other parents or autistics especially like, and when possible a review of that book to help others understand what is good/bad about the book. I've set up a page, Autism Books, to provide that list. From this list, each book will link (eventually) to a review(s) of that book. I've started it off with a review of Some Kind of Genius I originally wrote last September. Again, please let me know of any books you think should be listed and if you have a review you would like posted here.

Other: I've also set up a page to list the various organizations related to Autism. I've not done any work on this page yet, mainly because I'm not really very familiar with the organizations or their missions. These organizations range from support of finding a cure to advocacy of autistic rights. Any suggestions on how this might best be formatted are greatly appreciated, as are recommendations for which organizations I should include.

28 Mar 06

Welcome to “Autism for Parents”

Filed under: Autism — Brett @ 2006

AUTISM. Few words can create fear and panic in the parents of young children like this one can.

Prior to receiving a diagnosis of autism for their own kids, most parent's knowledge of autism comes from Dustin Hoffmann's portrayal of an autistic man in Rain Man, or from the many recent stories about the ongoing "Autism Epidemic." Not surprisingly, the initial reaction of these parents on receiving this diagnosis many times is one of shock, terror, distress, and despair. "What did I do to cause this?" many wonder.

Over the past few years, the World Wide Web has dramatically increased the amount of information available on autism and its many considerations. These considerations include those that most parents will immediately think of – such as "what caused this?" and "how do I fix this?" – and those that they will eventually have to face – "what kind of services will my local schools provide" and "what about adulthood for my child?". There is also a wealth of information from various organizations, advocacy groups, other parents of autistic children, and individuals with autism.

Unfortunately, with all of this information comes the challenge of information overload. There is so much out there today, that it can be hard to figure out where to even start. Even worse for parents of newly diagnosed children, the world of autism is fraught with controversy and differing – sometimes cruelly so – opinions. I truly believe that most (sadly, not all) parents want only to do what is best for their child, whether autistic or not. But how do you do that when you don't know what is best for them?

My purpose in creating this site is to hopefully help parents navigate the challenges of raising an autistic child. Parenthood is challenging enough when you think you know what to expect from your kids, but when you really don't have a clue it can feel like you're breaking new ground that no one has been on before. I'm here to tell you that there are many others who have trod this ground. My hope is that those experiences of other parents (myself included) will help finding your way a bit easier.

Blog at WordPress.com.

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