A Lunch Conversation Between Autism Parents

December 17, 2016

Thank you for supporting SafeMinds Annual Appeal 2016 and have a wonderful Holiday Season!

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A Lunch Conversation Between Autism Parents
Annual Appeal Message by Lisa Wiederlight, Executive Director

A couple of months ago, a father of a young girl with autism asked me over lunch if I worry about my son’s future, and what I do to manage that “middle of the night” anxiety. You know the feeling. I can’t deny that, like most SafeMinds supporters, I too, have stared at the ceiling in bed, worrying for my son’s future with autism. I’m not just talking 30 years out. I’m concerned because many people with autism are sick, and need constant, experienced caregivers.

Autism prevalence is at epidemic levels. More Americans have autism than the number of people who live in Baltimore, or Las Vegas, or Austin. We know about the co-occurring conditions, like gastrointestinal disease, aggression, wandering, seizures, and suicidality. We shudder knowing that the journal, Autistica, published findings this year showing that people with autism live, on average, 18 years less than their neurotypical peers.

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What is being done to address this tsunami? There seems to be a theme in the federal government and in the mainstream media that all we need is autism acceptance and more services and it will all be ok. But it won’t. We can’t allow the “new normal” to permeate the discussion of autism. And we need your help on this effort.

SafeMinds is changing paradigms and outcomes.

SafeMinds is going to take the opportunity that lies before us. We aren’t accepting the “new normal” because too many people with autism are sick. We hope you will help us on this journey.

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Together, WE WILL:

Now how did I answer the second part of the question the autism dad asked me over lunch–specifically, how I manage my anxiety over my son’s future? I don’t get as anxious anymore, because as part of SafeMinds, I am helping to make overdue change happen for our community, and for generations to come. I am proud to be a part of SafeMinds, and to collaborate with its board members, committee members, and supporters. We’re growing, this movement is growing, and we need your help to sustain it.

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Please consider donating much-needed funds to SafeMinds. Join us. Sustain us. Inspire us. We’ll appreciate whatever amount you can give so that we all will keep moving forward. Ways to give include: DONATE ONLINE or by check made out to SafeMinds 1122 Kenilworth Drive, #307, Baltimore, MD 21204.

Thank you, and enjoy the Holiday Season!

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