Aspergers Support Groups Elgin IL
Advice On Autism And Teens From An Adult On The Autism Spectrum
Advice on autism and teens from an adult on the autism spectrum
Lisa Jo Rudy
School is a tough place for teens with autism spectrum disorders (ASDs). In junior and senior high school, conformity is valued. But for people with autism, social conformity is extraordinarily difficult to achieve. Junior and senior high school also require tremendous flexibility, as students move from space to space, subject to subject, teacher to teacher. Since people with autism tend to prefer consistency to change, this, too, can be difficult to manage.
Robyn Steward is a young adult with Asperger syndrome. She lives in London, and is a trainer and mentor working with teens and parents who are coping with autism spectrum disorders. Robyn's experience may be both helpful and inspiring to parents and to teens with Asperger syndrome.
Here's how Robyn describes her own teen and young adult experiences:
I was essentially asked politely to leave school, because I spent so much time out of classes since I refused to be called names by the other children. I had no real friends at school apart from the IT teacher and no friends at home. I just assumed I'd never have friends or get anywhere because I felt that was what the teachers were saying. and because I got bad grades and struggled being organized.
But when I went to college things changed. Suddenly I did get good grades. I made friends and became organized. I’m almost 22 and still don’t fit in, but I have my own place in the world.
I believe that everyone can find their own place and they may do that aged 12 or aged 99. The best thing you can do is be there for them, because they will have to find their own path, because only one path is "them-shaped," just as only one path is "Robyn-shaped" and nothing can change that.
Parents raising a teen with Asperger syndrome may have a tough time helping their child find that "them-shaped" path. Here's Robyn's advice:
At school, most teens want to fit in, but sometimes they just don’t. I was one of those teens, now I've found my feet in London (UK) as a trainer and mentor. I train people who work with those with an ASD (autism spectrum disorder) and I also mentor young people with ASD’s. So I come into contact with a lot of people, not just those with ASDs but their families, teachers and supporters. Most of the young people I work with have a common problem: they are "them-shaped" and that often means they don’t fit in anywhere at school.
It can be easy to say this will be better when you're older but this doesn’t solve the immediate problem.
One of my mentees said to me recently, “I’m almost normal now,” and this is very sad indeed, because you cannot become "unautistic." You can change behaviors, but unless you actually do someone harm, such change can sometimes be a bad thing.
Of course, I'm not saying that a behavior like smearing excrement on the walls could possibly be a good thing; that’s one behavior that clearly ...
Aspergers And Imagination
Aspergers and Imagination
It is a gross misconception that people with Aspergers have no imagination. A great number of writers, directors, artists, more inventive engineers are on the spectrum. I personally know hundreds, through the course of my work, and through the many unknown but super-talented readers and Facebook friends I have that are Aspies (people with Aspergers). Psychologists who have observed kids with AS have labeled them as unimaginative, simply because they were not playing as society expects to see children play and have subsequently misunderstood what they've observed. I am not a clinician, but I can give you examples from my own life that refute this belief, and I know from talking to others that many Aspergians with vivid imaginations have shared this type of experience.
I didn't like dolls very much when I was little. They were big, awkward, and lacked realistic body parts. They didn't move, they didn't speak, or if they did, speech was limited. I much preferred Barbies, if they were the more modern rubbery kind. (The early ones were hard plastic.) But most of all, I liked making up stories. In my mind, I could create vast epic films that were three dimensional, had real characters that I could control, but that took on a life of their own. I could fly, gallop on horseback, perform magic spells, whatever I wanted. In my childhood,
I starred in more movies than Anjelina Jolie...and most nights couldn't wait to climb into bed so I could lie in the dark and do this undistracted by other people and their chatter, which to me often sounded like it was about nothing. (And still does, truth be told). This was from the earliest age I can remember, and before I was able to speak.
Coloring between the lines of a coloring book is pretty banal in comparison, don't you think? If I'd had the money and the connections, or supportive parents and teachers, perhaps I'd have become a Spielberg of sorts, but my creativity was thwarted...
Parent Group- Ottawa
Dates: 12/1/2014 – 12/1/2014
Autism Resource Center at Easter Seals Ottawa
1718 N 2525th Rd
Parents Raising Children with ASDs Support Group- Joliet
Dates: 12/8/2014 – 12/8/2014
Easter Seals Joliet
212 Barney Drive
This is a wonderful way to meet other parents, get information and get connected to other resources in the community. Childcare will be provided by Easter Seals staff as long as you call ahead to make arrangements.
Dates: 12/18/2014 – 12/18/2014
Easter Seals-Joliet Joliet
212 Barney Drive
Sibshops are fun, recreational groups for children that have siblings with special needs. It is an opportunity for sibs to meet other sibs, talk about the good and not so good things and learn that Sibs R Special 2! Our group is for children in 1st - 8th grade. It meets the third Thursday of every month from 4:00 - 6:00.
Chicagoland Autism Connection (CAC)/ Chicago Southside Autism Support Group
Dates: 12/20/2014 – 12/20/2014
Easter Seals School and Center of Autism Research Chicago�
1939 West 13th Street
Caffeinated Connections Networking- Schaumburg
Dates: 12/2/2014 – 12/2/2014
Schaumburg Bank & Trust Schaumburg
1180 E Higgins Rd
Start the new year off with an inspirational Caffeinated Connections ! Improve your relationships in 2014 with author Brian R King's book. About the Author: Brian R. King, LCSW is the Best Selling Author of five books, an engaging public speaker and life coach. He is a cancer survivor, adult with Dyslexia, A.D.H.D. and the father of three sons on the autism spectrum (as well as someone who lives on the autism spectrum himself). Despite these hurdles, Brian has emerged a master at turning problems into possibilities. Brian knows success in life has nothing to do with circumstances and everything to do with strategy. Brian�s plan is to start a ripple effect that helps create a better, more accepting and respectful society. He knows it only takes small shifts to move mountains. About the Book: Brian King�s insightful guides What to Do When You're Totally Screwed: Simple Strategies for Bringing Your Life into Balance and Strategies for Building Successful Relationships with People on the Autism Spectrum: Let's Relate! prepared us to shift our perspective on the way we communicate with the world. Now, Brian delivers a fully accessible and authoritative anthology, bursting with interpersonal communication advice that can be easily applied to every facet of our lives � at work, in love and with family. Perfect Moments in Relationships provides us with practical solutions to all the situations we encounter as we work in teams from the boardroom to the dinner table. Solid, straightforward, fiercely honest and easy-to-understand, Brian�s advice gives us the knowledge and power to: � Communicate seamlessly across different levels of an organization � Simplify your relationships with the 4Rs of Life � Leverage a quick solution to stop repeating yourself forever � Be in control of how your first thought of the day shapes your progress No matter how frequently you find yourself needing to communicate with new groups, this book will provide expert knowledge to make every inte