April 16, 2024

Meet the Smith Family

meet the smith's as they Share their journey of a child with autism

Steve and Teresa Smith are a couple from Maine. They are parents to a 9-year old son named Josiah. The Smith's are sharing their journey as they just recently learned they are parents of a child with autism.

April is Autism Awareness Month. And, ironically, the Smith's son Josiah finally got diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder after first noticing differences at 3 years old. Surprised to hear, but they were actually relieved and happy about this diagnosis. Times have changed. The stigma of this disorder is slowly disappearing as the science/neurobiology of it is more understood and because of the neurodiversity movement.

Now the Smith's understand why Josiah goes into fight/flight so often at school, why he avoids crowded and busy spaces, why a whistle blow in a gym in P.E. can incapacitate him, why he seems so "defiant" to norms and social hierarchy, and yet is so gifted with language, art, Rubik's cube, technology, and is an intense MineCrafter. Instead of interpreting his "problematic behavior" as willful disobedience, Steve and Teresa can collaborate with him and introduce tools at home and school to promote his independence, safety/trust, interdependence, self-awareness, and self-advocacy. They want him growing up, loving and accepting his unique AuDHD (Autism + ADHD) identity. As Teresa states, "We have a lot of work ahead of us (a lot of work to undo and to heal as well) and are continuing to educate ourself and shift paradigms as a family."

Join us in learning more and embracing neurodiversity in your family, school, church, and workplace. Watch this short video for a deeper understanding of how we are all unique. https://youtu.be/7VIN9_U5Sf8?feature=shared

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