Raising a Child with Autism

Autism catches parents unaware, appearing unexpectedly as an unwelcome threat to their child, family, and future. From the moment they hear their child’s diagnosis, parents face a range of treatment decisions requiring knowledge that often exceeds their education, background, or life experiences. This need for specific, individualized information and treatment for persons with autism is dynamic and lifelong.

Diagnosis Autism: Immediate Action

With autism demonstrably on the rise, even more parents, clinicians, educators, and service providers face challenges now that are centered on children and adults with autism. They need answers today on the best methods, therapies and treatments for the immediate care and support of those living with autism. For military families, one of the first challenges is learning where to start.

Learning Curve: Getting Organized

After the shock that accompanies the diagnosis of autism subsides, parents face two daunting challenges: a steep learning curve and a need to quickly organize a treatment plan. This section offers useful tips for finding and evaluating information as well as a “how to” resource for organizing and maintaining the information you will need as your child and you navigate your life journey through autism.

Treatment Options

One of the few points of general consensus about autism and treatment is that the earlier the intervention, the better its potential to benefit the child with autism. Not all treatments are equal or equally supported by research as recently confirmed by the National Standards Project conducted by the National Autism Center.

Supporting Autism Siblings

Siblings of children with autism are in a unique position; they face overwhelming challenges (similar to those that parents encounter), but at a time before they’ve developed appropriate coping strategies. As a result, they need support to ensure that they’re informed, feel respected, and know how to be compassionate advocates for their brothers and sisters [...]