Hannah Gadsby on Autism and the Risk of Failing After ‘Nanette’

The comedian who said she was quitting stand-up is back with a new show, “Douglas,” that is sold out in Australia. “I don’t care if this fails,” she says.
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Essay: The Trouble With Autism in Novels

The disorder is poorly understood. Should novelists be able to make it mean whatever they want?
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Autism concern over home schooling rise in Wales

Many autistic children are struggling to cope in schools and are being removed, a charity warns.
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Nonfiction: A Family Memoir Makes the Case That Autism Is Different, Not Less

Judith Newman’s “To Siri With Love,” about life with an autistic son, is both riotous and moving.
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Love Story ‘Keep the Change’ Challenges Misconceptions About Autism

Rachel Israel makes her feature film debut with “Keep the Change,” a very different kind of romantic comedy about an unlikely couple. Israel, who serves as an adjunct professor of film at Rhode Island School of Design, spoke to Variety about her inspiration for the story, the challenges she faced in making the film and… Read more »

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Autism diagnoses ‘could be reduced under NHS plan’

The National Autistic Society says it is deeply concerned about NHS plans in south-west London.
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Hairdresser Goes Above And Beyond For Young Customer With Autism

A West Virginia mom’s viral Facebook post is demonstrating the power of empathy when it comes to kids with special needs.

On Dec. 29, Jennifer McCafferty posted a photo that shows her 4-year-old son Isaiah having his hair cut while sitting on the floor of a Sport Clips salon in Charleston. In the caption, the mom explained that Isaiah has autism, so this hairdresser’s kindness meant a great deal to their family. 

“This woman, Kaylen, … did more for my heart than she will probably ever realize,” McCafferty wrote. “Haircuts with Isaiah are no small feat. He hates having anything near his ears, the sound of clippers sends him in to a tailspin.”

McCafferty explained that this particular evening at the salon was consistent with their past difficult experiences. “I was ready to give up, but she wasn’t,” she said. “She sat on the floor with my baby in her lap, and she cut his hair. They talked about Dory and Christmas, and she even let him spray her with her water bottle.”

Concluding her post, the mom shared a message on behalf of her family and others facing similar challenges. “Autism can be so very, very hard, but people like this make our days just a little easier,” she wrote. 

McCafferty’s post received nearly 95,000 likes. The Love What Matters Facebook page shared her story as well. The comments sections on both posts are filled with responses from fellow parents of kids with autism. 

McCafferty told The Huffington Post that Kaylen was a real lifesaver that day at the salon. When Isaiah had a meltdown, she went above and beyond to help him find “his quiet, safe space” in the midst of the overwhelming sensory stimulation.

“She wasn’t fazed by his screams; she understood his fears,” McCafferty recalled. “She figured out where it was he needed to go, which just so happened to be the floor, and she took him there.”

The mom said Isaiah has a “beautiful soul” and a warm heart. “He is everything that you would want your child to be,” she said. “He’s fun and full of energy. He’s sweet and kind, and ridiculously funny. He loves with everything he has.”

Isaiah’s love is especially boundless when it comes to his 6-year-old brother, Alex. “They have an amazing bond, and I credit Alex for a lot of the progress Isaiah has made with his social interactions,” McCafferty said. “Alex is able to comfort Isaiah when the rest of us can’t, and always seems to know just what Isaiah needs to soothe him.”

McCafferty told HuffPost she hopes Isaiah’s haircut story will bring hope to other parents of kids with special needs. “I want them to realize that even though it can feel like it, they are not alone,” she said. “I want everyone to see just how much love and kindness matter.”

CORRECTION: A previous version of this story stated that the mother lives in South Carolina. She lives in West Virginia.

— This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

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The Incredible Shot An Autistic Dream Book I with Autism Resource Guide

The Incredible Shot An Autistic Dream Book I with Autism Resource Guide


Johnny is a little boy who was just diagnosed with Autism. He has dreams of playing professional basketball one day in the National Basketball Association. He often fantasizes over those dreams when he practices basketball. His main dream is to make the game winning shot in the NBA finals at the end of a basketball game to give his team the NBA championship. Johnny was a socially awkward boy in school with very few friends. Most of the kids made fun of him or bullied him due to the characteristics he had because of Autism. When Johnny was younger this did not bother him much but as he begins to get older it starts to impact him on deeper levels. One thing that was always constant for him in his life was basketball. Whether he was shooting hoops at home in his driveway, shooting free throws at the local park, or trying to play basketball with the other kids who were bigger than he was at recess Johnny always had a basketball in his hand. Johnny had planned on trying out for the elementary school basketball team in the fifth grade. He was excited about the possibility of playing on a real basketball team where he might have the chance to be a super star. He worked hard and spent countless hours each summer shooting hoops because he wanted to make that team. In book I of “The Incredible Shot: An Autistic Dream” we will follow Johnny’s story as he is diagnosed with Autism. After a grueling diagnostic process, Johnny’s parents decide to take him to Chuckie Cheese as a reward for cooperating with the doctors and counselors who helped diagnose him. Johnny loves pizza and his favorite video arcade game happened to be at Chuckie Cheese. It was a basketball game where kids were allowed to shoot hoops. Johnny had his eyes on two prizes this day. He wanted to win the NBA championship for the San Antonio Spurs and he wanted to win a grand prize from Chuckie Cheese. He had his eyes on a big furry basketball that he could play with around the house. Read book I to see if Johnny can acc

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TooLoud Autism Awareness – Puzzle Black & White Baby Romper Bodysuit

TooLoud Autism Awareness – Puzzle Black & White Baby Romper Bodysuit


Unique, Authentic, copyrighted design by TooLoud (Trademark) brand. Printed in the USA with pride! Help others become aware, and hopefully educate themselves, about autism with this print. These fun printed garments are a great personal touch on you, or as a gift to a friend or loved one! Great for all-year-round too! Colors may differ from image, as each monitor is made and calibrated differently. This is not an unauthorized replica or counterfeit item. This is an original inspired design and does not infringe on any rights holders rights. The words used in the title and/or search terms are not intended to imply they are licensed by any rights holders.

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Special needs children with autism are always unique Greeting Card

Special needs children with autism are always unique Greeting Card


7 x 5 Paper Greeting Card
List Price: $ 3.50
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Jim Carrey Apologizes For Tweeting Photo Of Boy With Autism In Anti-Vaccine Rant

Jim Carrey spent Tuesday evening and Wednesday morning tweeting about his anti-vaccination views, and on Thursday night he apologized for including a photo of a young boy without permission.

The actor had sent out an image of the boy, who has autism, as part of a series of tweets challenging a new California law that eliminates personal-belief exemptions for childhood immunizations.

The mother of Alex Echols asked Carrey to remove the photo of her son, noting that he had not been given permission to use it.

The picture, which has since been removed, was attached to a tweet that read, “A trillion dollars buys a lot of expert opinions. Will it buy you? TOXIN FREE VACCINES, A REASONABLE REQUEST!” It was included among several images of distraught children with autism.

The scientific consensus, based on multiple studies, is that the vaccines distributed in the United States do not cause autism. Moreover, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states that thimerosal, the specific compound that Carrey argues can lead to autism, was removed from childhood vaccines more than a decade ago, except for some flu vaccines.

Alex’s aunt, Elizabeth Welch, posted a screenshot of Carrey’s tweet on Instagram. In the caption, she said that her nephew does have autism but was diagnosed before receiving any vaccinations.

Carrey is not the only anti-vaccine celebrity. Most notably, there’s his former girlfriend, Jenny McCarthy, whose son has autism.

— This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

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Jim Carrey Apologizes For Tweeting Photo Of Boy With Autism In Anti-Vaccine Rant

Jim Carrey spent Tuesday evening and Wednesday morning tweeting about his anti-vaccination views, and on Thursday night he apologized for including a photo of a young boy without permission.

The actor had sent out an image of the boy, who has autism, as part of a series of tweets challenging a new California law that eliminates personal-belief exemptions for childhood immunizations.

The mother of Alex Echols asked Carrey to remove the photo of her son, noting that he had not been given permission to use it.

The picture, which has since been removed, was attached to a tweet that read, “A trillion dollars buys a lot of expert opinions. Will it buy you? TOXIN FREE VACCINES, A REASONABLE REQUEST!” It was included among several images of distraught children with autism.

The scientific consensus, based on multiple studies, is that the vaccines distributed in the United States do not cause autism. Moreover, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states that thimerosal, the specific compound that Carrey argues can lead to autism, was removed from childhood vaccines more than a decade ago, except for some flu vaccines.

Alex’s aunt, Elizabeth Welch, posted a screenshot of Carrey’s tweet on Instagram. In the caption, she said that her nephew does have autism but was diagnosed before receiving any vaccinations.

Carrey is not the only anti-vaccine celebrity. Most notably, there’s his former girlfriend, Jenny McCarthy, whose son has autism.

— This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.



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Seven Cartoon Characters Who Might be on the Autism Spectrum

2015-07-02-1435863470-3995659-depositphotoanimatedtelev1.jpg 2015-07-02-1435863503-6002835-depositphotos_46884227Collectiblesmurfcharacters1.jpg 2015-07-02-1435863535-2635888-depositphotos_48404605CookieMonster.jpg
“Mom, I think that person has autism,” says my 10-year-old son Noah. And because his brother Evan is on the spectrum, he has developed an intuitive ability to detect even the most subtle signs of autism.

Sometimes Noah notices an inability to decipher social cues. Sometimes it’s an unusual speech pattern or a repetitive behavior. Once it was something as simple as a mother holding the hand of her young teenage boy.

Noah’s A-dar* got me thinking about which cartoon characters might have an autism diagnosis if such a thing existed in the world of animation. But then, like every responsible attorney, realized I probably should include some sort of disclaimer.

Caution: This post is intended for people who have an appreciation for sarcasm and humor.Yes, I know that autism is a pervasive developmental disorder characterized by deficits in social interaction and communication, a limited range of activities and interests and often the presence of repetitive behaviors. And I know that if a person exhibits one or even some of these traits, it does not necessarily mean he/she has autism. But, for the fun of it, I have diagnosed seven cartoon characters who meet at least one of the criteria for autism. Just remember; sarcasm and humor – or at least one mom’s attempt at it.

1. Cookie Monster Not only does this Sesame Street character exhibit a significant preoccupation with cookies, but his expressive language is significantly delayed when compared to his monster peers. Like many on the spectrum, if he had his way and the writers didn’t cave in to pressures to make him eat healthier, Cookie Monster would happily live on a self-restricted diet consisting of only his preferred food.

2. Schroeder, the object of Lucy’s unrequited affection, is a precocious piano playing prodigy. His savant skills are perfect, and his knowledge of all things Beethoven are nothing less than impressive. Typically, Schroeder is content to play his music and engages in very little on-going dialogue. He can, however, become easily agitated if either his piano playing or his idol Beethoven are criticized.

3. One of the 101 Dalmatians. The prevalence of autism is 1 in 68. Statistically speaking, if you have 101 Dalmatians, chances are at least one of them will fall somewhere on the spectrum.

4. Tigger clearly has issues with attention and focus. With all his bouncing around, we can also speculate that his sensory-seeking behaviors are indicative of an autism diagnosis.

5. Elmer Fudd Forget about the fact that he really needs a good speech pathologist, the guy is obsessed with killing a rabbit. Does he even talk about anything else, ever?

6. Brainy Smurf is a know-it-all intellectual who isn’t afraid to impart his wisdom upon the entire Smurf clan Do they want it? Mostly they don’t, so it’s not unusual for Brainy to be kicked outside the village or smacked over the head with a mallet. Despite the abuse, he remains oblivious to the fact that his fellow Smurfs have no interest in his “wisdom.”

7. SpongeBob wins the award for having the most characteristics of autism. Although hyperactive, he is extremely focused and determined and will do whatever it takes to accomplish a goal. Often, he is oblivious to impending danger, and his lack of awareness tends to put him and others at risk for harm. He has a hard time detecting lies, and his kind-hearted and innocent nature means he is nice to everyone, notably those who are not always kind to him. SpongeBob also has anxiety. He is especially anxious about clowns and the dark.

*A-dar is a made-up term used to refer to someone with an intuitive ability to identify an individual on the autism spectrum.

Which cartoon characters would you add to this list?

This post originally appeared on SpecialEv.com.

— This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.



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Parents’ Age May Be Factor in Child’s Autism Risk

Greater odds of disorder in kids of teen moms, older moms and parents with big age gap, study suggests
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Special Diets, Supplements Not Always Helpful for Kids With Autism

These interventions are often tied to too little, or too much of certain nutrients, study finds
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Autism Linked to Higher Smog Levels, Study Says

But no mechanism explains the link so far, and one expert expressed skepticism
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Animals May Ease Social Anxiety in Children With Autism

Playing with guinea pig in stressful situation was calming, study finds
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Autism and the World According to Matt

Autism and the World According to Matt


They say you must walk a mile in another person’s shoes to really know them. Liz Becker is an Autism Mom who walks a marathon in her autistic son’s shoes and details it beautifully in her book Autism and The World According to Matt: A collection of 50 inspirational short stories on raising a moderate/severe mostly non-verbal autistic child from diagnosis to independence. This delightful collection of stories is a love letter from a mom who refuses to accept the 1990 view of autism that is imposed on her son, and instead embarks on a journey to uncover the beauty of who her son really is. The stories encompass everything from the trials and tribulations of potty training to helping Matt get his own apartment. Becker’s style of writing evokes an Earl Hamner simplicity, making you feel as though Walton’s mountain has visited the land of Autism. The result is lush and beautiful, you feel as though you are a part of the family that continually gathers ranks to protect Matt and help him safely make his way to independence. Readers will find themselves laughing along as both mother and son find the way to communicate in a world filled with complexities, half-truths and unrealistic expectations. They will cheer as Matt enjoys victories large and small and, like me, they will likely shed a tear when the road blocks seem just too tall to scale. Do yourself a favor and read this inspirational book from a Mom who helped to forge a path for Autism parents before Autism Speaks, before insurance reform and before there was any reason to hope.” -Shannon Penrod, Host, Autism-Live

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Doctors Often Ignore Parents’ Concerns About Autism in Young Kids: Study

Research suggests that needless delays in diagnosis, treatment, occur as a result
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Can Pets Help Boost Social Skills for Kids With Autism?

Study finds slight evidence that family pets boost social skills in children with the disorder

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Holidays Can Be Sensory Overload for Kids With Autism

Expert offers tips for parents on how to help children stay calm during hustle and bustle of the season
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Kids With Autism Tend to Be Less Active, Study Says

But ‘underlying physical abilities are there’
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Could Low Iron Intake During Pregnancy Raise Autism Risk?

Study reinforces benefits of taking supplements as recommended

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Apps for Autism

Apps for Autism


Autism? There’s an app for that! Actually, there are more than 200 apps for autism, and this book will guide you through them so you can confidently utilize today’s technology to maximize your child or student’s success! Speech Language Pathologist Lois Jean Brady wrote this book in order to educate parents, teachers, and other professionals about the breakthrough method she calls “iTherapy”–which is the use of Apple products (iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch) and various apps (computer applications) in meeting students’ individual educational goals. Lois believes that all persons on the spectrum can learn how to use technology in a way that is relevant to them. She shares important tips on how to use apps responsibly and effectively by maintaining a child-centered, team approach to teaching and learning, taking into account the individual’s interests, strengths/challenges, vision, motor planning, attention, sensory processing, memory, cognitive ability, environment, and access to tools. Lois also coaches adults on how they can use prompting and reinforcement techniques to help establish and generalize skills learned, until students are able to consistently demonstrate the skills in various environments (home, school, etc.). For those who are new to the wonderful world of apps, worry not! Lois provides helpful sections on how to get started, including: Choosing an iDevice, Basic iDevice Operations, Opening an Account, How to Download an App from iTunes, and more!But what about apps that were released since this book was published? Again–Lois has you covered! Just visit this book’s companion website AutismApps dot org for reviews of new apps that made the grade. And be sure to “like” the Apps for Autism Facebook page for insider tips on limited-time app sales and giveaways!You will be astonished and excited by the number of apps available, and the vast variety of issues they can address: Voice OutputSign LanguageOne-Touch SwitchText-to-SpeechArticulationEncouragementLi …

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Common Genes Implicated in Autism Study

Findings suggest genetics play a bigger role than environment in risk of disorder
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SPECIAL NEWS BULLETIN!-http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News-
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The First Year: Autism Spectrum Disorders: An Essential Guide for the Newly Diagnosed Child

The First Year: Autism Spectrum Disorders: An Essential Guide for the Newly Diagnosed Child


When parents learn that their child has autism, the news can be devastating, even paralyzing. Meanwhile, the first 12 months after diagnosis are the most important when it comes to intervention. As a parent of a child with autism, Nancy D. Wiseman knows firsthand how difficult it can be to unravel complex issues, discover what questions to ask, and find effective treatments. In this landmark guide, Wiseman offers both compassionate insight and a wealth of information for diagnoses from Asperger’s to classic autism. Day by day, week by week, month by month, "The First Year(R): Autism Spectrum Disorders" walks parents through a wide range of medical and lifestyle concerns, helps them navigate the healthcare, insurance, and educational systems, and ensures the best possible outcome for their child.
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