AUTISM AWARENESS MONTH: A Personal Journey & Professional Insight

Michele Gonzalez

AUTISM AWARENESS MONTH: A Personal Journey & Professional Insight

We are grateful for Michele, who provides personal insights into the misconceptions and advancements in autism treatment:

“It’s a very personal journey that I’ve had with autism awareness,” Michele says. Her son, now 18, was diagnosed with autism at a young age. Reflecting on those early days, she recalls lacking community support and understanding. “The professionals who worked with him were scratching their heads almost as much as we were,” she shares, highlighting the isolation and confusion many parents experience upon receiving an autism diagnosis.

Michele’s journey underscores the importance of raising awareness and providing support for families navigating the challenges of autism. “The most isolating thing as a parent is nobody understood what that meant,” she says. “I do not want anyone to experience that isolation and that loneliness.”

One common misconception about autism, Michele notes, is its perceived mystery and difficulty in treatment. Contrary to this belief, she emphasizes the strategies and technologies available today to support individuals with autism.

Drawing from her own experience, Michele highlights the transformative impact of assistive technologies such as speaking devices. “My son now has a speaking device,” she shares. “It took me 16 years to get him a speaking device through his insurance, through the appropriate channel. And now he’s not breaking through my doors anymore because he can talk.”

The importance of early intervention and access to essential resources for individuals with autism is critical.  Michele emphasizes the need for immediate identification and intervention, likening it to providing glasses for someone with vision impairment. “If they’re unable to speak, even if they’re making progress in that direction, we’re identifying that immediately, and we’re getting them the tools, just like with glasses,” she explains.

Michele also highlights the abundance of experts and resources available, particularly in Colorado. “We have so many analysts – it’s access to what should be considered routine medical treatment,” she says.

As we observe Autism Awareness Month 2024, Michele’s story reminds us of the importance of empathy, understanding, and advocacy. Through collective efforts, we can work towards a more inclusive society that celebrates the strengths and diversity of individuals with autism.

No Comments

Post A Comment