My 16 year old son with autism was asked to present at the prestigious Harvard Medical School Child Neurology Conference today. He did so with the support of a PowerPoint. I was blown away. He told the crowd what it feels like to have autism. My follow-up, what he dubbed “my mom’s long speech”, couldn’t compare to his works, his ability to regulate himself to speak in front of a room of strangers. There were so many excellent physicians, including Ann Neumeyer and Andrew’s neurologist Kristen Lindgren who I both greatly admire, present. Assume competence. Always. My son- the self-advocate. Awesome.
I spoke about our experiences with medical professionals and how hospitals and doctors can make the experience more autism-friendly. We feel very fortunate that Andrew receives his care from MGH Hospital for Children from a stellar team of caring and incredibly smart folks. For a kid with an IQ that tests at 52, I’d say he’s rocking the world.