When Geeky Met Dweeby: Autism Rates Higher Near Technology Hubs?

My daughter was born in Northern California, where my husband and I both worked for hi-tech companies before relocating back to Chicago. She was diagnosed with autism two years later by a neurologist who felt that autism was mostly a genetic disorder. His theory was that autism is an extreme mutation of a specific personality type that is marked by narrow interests, poor social and communication skills, and a hyper-logical, engineering-type mind.Hello, Silicon Valley Nerdlinger!...more

For Children With Autism, Progress Is a Drop In The Bucket

As all parents of autistic kids know, progress with our kids can be glacially slow.  It's there, but it's like watching water drip into a bath tub.  If you constantly stare at the tub, it's nearly impossible to see it accumulate....more

We haven't invested in an iPad, but they are definitely all the rage for autistic kids. There ...more

Top 10 Bad Ideas For a Blog Post

OK, so I'm feeling a little uninspired blog-wise.  I'm digging deep for something to write about, but it's just not coming.  And as much as I poke my daughter with a cattle prod, she's just not coming through for me with anything good....more

Not a good sign if you are stumped already :)

I think if you carve out some kind of mission ...more

Ouching Tiger, Hittin' Dragon: A Special Needs Mother's Take on the Tiger Mom

By now, you've probably heard of Amy Chua, the "Tiger Mom"....more

National Special Needs Parents Day: Yeah, Nah, or Meh?

Congress is considering a resolution that would establish a national day of recognition honoring parents of special needs children, and I was surprised to see some of our fellow SN parents get up in arms about this.  Now I've been known to work myself up into a lather over the internet-outrage-du-jour when I don't even have a dog in the hunt -- I'm still chapped about TSA pat-downs and those fee-laden Kardashian Kards -- so I was all ready to get in on the action. ...more

I Hate the Piano

Audrey's been taking piano lessons for a couple of years now, and you might say that she has a love/hate relationship with it.  There have been so many ups and downs and I would have given up long ago, but she really has musical ability and I think it's good for her brain.  We waited until she had been taking lessons for almost a year before we bothered to buy a keyboard for her to practice on at home.  Once ...more

19 Nervous Breakdowns

Audrey will have 19 first days of school, assuming that she graduates from college.  Doesn't sound so bad when you put it like that, does it?  But when each of them represents a complete emotional meltdown, adjustments in meds, a...more

Is the A-Word the New R-Word?

Jennifer Aniston came under fire recently for using the word "retard", as have many others in the past.  I've never known where to weigh in on this one.  I have myself used the word just as Aniston did (she was referring to herself), as well as the word "retarded"...the latter mostly in the context of "socially-retarded" or "emotionally-retarded".  I am, after all, married.  To a man.But I got to thinking...what if the word "autistic" started to be used in the same way?  What if the Black-Eyed Peas' new hit song was called "Let's Get Autistic"?  Or peop...more