This guest blog post kicks off a new series written by my friend and colleague – Dr. Dan E. Burns. Dan’s series will address many of the challenges faced by families with adult children living with Autism Spectrum Disorders. In this first post, Dan breaks down and describes many of the ways families can go about “Funding Autism for Life” with pertinent suggestions and ideas for parents with younger children as well. I know you’re going to learn a lot and enjoy Dan’s guest series. Please help me welcome Dan!
Funding Autism for Life: A Map to Treasure Island
By Dan E. Burns
“It’s autism. There is no medical treatment. Let the schools take care of him and save your money for his institutionalization when he turns 21.” Those were the final, chilling words Ben’s pediatric neurologist spoke to me on Pearl Harbor Day, December 7, 1990. Ben was three years, four months old.
I declared war. With an ABA manual in one hand and biomedical primer in the other, I fought for Ben’s future. But as the months and years went by and the hope for a full recovery dimmed, I had to admit that his pediatrician was right. Where would Ben live, work, and find friends after the school bus stopped coming?