Autism

Parents of Autistic Kids Are a Lot Like Olympians

Emmanuelle Assor | Posted 04.11.2014 | Canada Living
Emmanuelle Assor

While watching the Sochi Olympics this past February I was blown away by the prowess of these young athletes defying the laws of gravity, and surprising me at every turn. Then one night I thought to myself that actually, our lives as parents with autistic children are kind of the same. Except we don't win a medal at the end.

3 Ways You Can Help Families Affected by Autism

Kathleen O’Grady | Posted 04.02.2014 | Canada Living
Kathleen O’Grady

April 2 is World Autism Awareness Day, and April is World Autism Awareness month. Unfortunately, it's no longer uncommon for most of us to know families struggling just to keep up with the day-to-day tasks required of them because they have a child with autism. Here's how you -- as a family member, friend, neighbour or even just as a friendly acquaintance or concerned citizen -- can help families affected by autism.

Maximizing Our Autistic Son's Chance For Success

Julian Hung | Posted 03.26.2014 | Canada Living
Julian Hung

Julian Hung's son was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder at the age of two and a half. His son has since had three years of applied behaviour analysis (ABA) therapy and has made tremendous progress.

A PQ Majority Could Silence My Autistic Son

Linda Mastroianni | Posted 03.20.2014 | Canada Politics
Linda Mastroianni

The 41st Quebec general election is scheduled for Monday April 7, 2014. A new PQ majority government would mean a possible referendum for Quebec separation from Canada in the near future. Yes, I know, we've been down this road before, only now, I have an autistic child who can only speak English. The dynamics have suddenly changed for me. Don't get me wrong, I love this province, I just don't like what's it's become over the last two years but most importantly, it's the uncertainty, the unknown that scares me the most. My son risks being silenced in a province that could, in the future, choose not to recognize his language

5 More Things Everyone Should Know About Autism

Emmanuelle Assor | Posted 03.20.2014 | Canada Living
Emmanuelle Assor

I decided to bring to light some information that people should know about Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). With a growing number of children living with an ASD, this information will help you better understand the experiences of these children, and their parents. The following are my last five points, though there could have been many more.

Ontario Can Be a Mean Place if You Have a Mental Illness

Marvin Ross | Posted 03.11.2014 | Canada Living
Marvin Ross

Ontario's record in improving services for those with mental illness and, in particular, those with the most serious of illnesses is totally reprehensible. And no amount of government committees can change any of that if all they do is meet, listen and ignore.

5 Things Everyone Should Know About Autism

Emmanuelle Assor | Posted 03.10.2014 | Canada Living
Emmanuelle Assor

I recently noticed that for the most part, when I talk about Autism the people around me don't really know what I am talking about. They all seem to have a vague idea about the problem, but no more. I constantly have to repeat the same information. This demonstrates clearly that we still need to educate people about Autism or ASD.

How to Have Compassion

Ken Rabow | Posted 03.04.2014 | Canada Impact
Ken Rabow

As a life coach, I work with all sorts of people in their teens and 20s. I learn from all of them. One of my most powerful learning lessons came from a 13-year-old client with Autism, who allowed me to see the dangers of people in power trying to "do the right thing." I am pleased to share with you now the inner workings of one the most interesting minds I have ever met.

Don't Blame Autism or Dementia on God's Wrath

Linda Mastroianni | Posted 03.26.2014 | Canada
Linda Mastroianni

My autistic son wasn't born because God was pissed off at America. My son was born because he was meant to be born, just as he is. My son was born so that I could learn how to be a better human being. He was born so he could teach me how to communicate without words. He was born so that I could learn how to listen with my heart and see things through touch.

My Son's Autism Doesn't Affect His Empathy

Linda Mastroianni | Posted 03.11.2014 | Canada Living
Linda Mastroianni

The thought of teaching my son Emilio to say "I'm sorry" in an effort to build and develop more empathy never crossed my mind. That's the reality of raising children with non-verbal autism; their parents are concentrating on having eye contact with their child; they are working on communication skills so they can verbalize their basic needs like "I want water".

How To Talk To a Child With Autism

Kathleen O’Grady | Posted 02.18.2014 | Canada Living
Kathleen O’Grady

Contrary to popular belief, most kids with autism are not anti-social. Yet, many 'neurotypicals' still struggle when it comes to including a child with autism in the conversation. Those that do try, often fail because they don't know a few essential rules that can help make the interaction possible.

Why I Work With Special Needs Children: A Professional's Perspective

Nathalie Garcin | Posted 02.16.2014 | Canada Impact
Nathalie Garcin

I now work with families -- parents who trust us with that which they cherish most of all: their children. All these parents share a common story: they feel forgotten, isolated, frustrated, helpless, and overwhelmed by public sector waiting lists and the lack of support. They are right to worry.

Probiotics May Improve Symptoms of Autism

Jason Tetro | Posted 02.08.2014 | Canada Living
Jason Tetro

A collaboration of over 20 American researchers found a possible answer although at first glance, it seemed ludicrous. The team looked at the bacteria in the gut of both normal and autistic children in the hopes of identifying any changes. Indeed, there were.

Autism Doesn't Just Happen to Other People

Emmanuelle Assor | Posted 02.01.2014 | Canada Living
Emmanuelle Assor

"Your son lives in a parallel universe." That was the first blow. A harsh sentence uttered by the teacher in charge of the little family daycare center my son had been attending for a few months. It was announced that our son had a "problem." That was in February 2012. A lot has happened since then...

Autism Speaks, Your Negativity is Only Making Things Worse

Linda Mastroianni | Posted 01.23.2014 | Canada Living
Linda Mastroianni

I don't ever want my son growing up thinking that he is a burden to his family or to society. I don't want him to think that his autism is the evil in him. Because every time Autism Speaks uses negative words to describe autism, these same words are attacking human beings living with autism.

Ottawa Only Cares About Squeezing Votes, Not Humanity

Glen Pearson | Posted 01.23.2014 | Canada
Glen Pearson

For all the Duffys, Harpers, Harbs, Wallins and Brazeaus, there are the quiet, reasoned and compassionate voices of the Segals, Dallaires and Cowans, and, yes, the Munsons, fighting for the humanity of Canadians instead of the loyalty of their base. They have tackled the political order in both houses and in every party to restore this country's image in the world.

Maybe There's No Such Thing As 'Autism Recovery'

Linda Mastroianni | Posted 12.23.2013 | Canada Living
Linda Mastroianni

In reality, you need to be extremely rich in order to try all the possible interventions that claim to have had children recover from autism. Biomedical treatment such as chelation, which is the process of removing toxic metals from the body and hyperbaric oxygen treatment are some examples of costly alternative medicine that most insurance companies do not pay for.

How Safe is Your Special Needs Child at School?

Linda Mastroianni | Posted 01.23.2014 | Canada Living
Linda Mastroianni

There is a vast difference between supervising typical children versus special needs kids. Every day I send my son to school I pray that all goes well and I pray for his safe return home. It's an awful feeling knowing that your child wouldn't be able to tell you if something bad happened to them.

My Autistic Son Can't Speak French -- Should He Leave Quebec?

Linda Mastroianni | Posted 11.25.2013 | Canada Living
Linda Mastroianni

We live in a province where language is a huge issue. I can't even begin to tell you how many times people have said to me "Oh your son doesn't speak French?! Do you realize you live in Quebec"? Really, thank you kindly for pointing that out. Do YOU realize my son is autistic and for the first five years of his life barely spoke?

I Have No Right to Murder My Autistic Son and Neither Do You

Linda Mastroianni | Posted 11.11.2013 | Canada
Linda Mastroianni

What gets me so upset is the dehumanization of an autistic child when they are put in a cage or dungeon-like living quarters and treated worse than you would treat a dog. While I do sympathize with parents who have to handle a child with violent behaviour, I will never understand how a parent can murder their own child.

SavvyMom Roundup: GMOs, Music Apps and an Anonymous Letter

Minnow Hamilton | Posted 10.24.2013 | Canada Living
Minnow Hamilton

The Google blackout, child advocates, an app to help you focus, bookshelves and ignorance. Those were a few things that caught my attention, and maybe yours too, this week.

The Problem With Studying Autism and Diet

Michael Kruse | Posted 09.09.2013 | Canada
Michael Kruse

While it is understandable that the public is interested in the ongoing story of why ASD patients have so many problems with their gut and diet, we cannot leap beyond the conclusions from one study and overgeneralise.  This study, like any good science, leaves us with more questions than answers

The Danger of "Playing God" With Genetics

Diane Weber Bederman | Posted 09.08.2013 | Canada Living
Diane Weber Bederman

Today, science is making it possible to remove "genetic errors" by changing the DNA in the ovum. I am left asking what constitutes a genetic error. Missing a limb? Cleft palate? Down syndrome? Autism? And who will be the arbiter of these decisions as we learn more about our genes and heredity? Do YOU want to be God? The point is who decides who is perfect, normal, and genetically acceptable? And when? In utero, at birth, later in life when an "imperfection" shows up? Perhaps in later years when one becomes a burden to family or society? Quality-of-life and utilitarian ethics (greatest good for the greatest number) could make for dangerous bedfellows.

5 Things You Should Know Before You Die

Rose Reisman | Posted 07.22.2013 | Canada Living
Rose Reisman

On Thursday May 9, I was one of 10 speakers who was given the opportunity to grace the stage of the Winter Garden Theatre. This was the "Top Ten Event," in support of Autism Ontario. Each speaker had 10 minutes to offer words of wisdom on the "one thing you should know before you die!" Read on for my five survival tips.

Why This Tech Firm Is Planning To Hire Hundreds With Autism

CBC | Posted 07.22.2013 | Canada Business

German software firm SAP says it wants to hire hundreds of people with autism to work as programmers and testers for its products. In a s...