Thursday, 26 May 2016

Some thoughts and practicalities on dual diagnosis - Down syndrome-autism

It is estimated that 7 - 10% of people with Down syndrome also have autism:

How to survive a dual diagnosis
Jerry Davich, Chicago Parent, 18 April 2016
Hearing the words "dual diagnosis" can be frightening for parents of a child with special needs, especially if they are already struggling to deal with an initial diagnosis.

"It was like we were reliving our life five years ago when we received my son's prenatal diagnosis," says Missy Gallagher, whose son, Finn, has Down syndrome ...


The Down Syndrome - Autism Connection recently drew attention to Bonnie Zampiro's 2015 article (about the reality of living with autism for some people and their families) as applying equally  to those with a dual diagnosis of Down syndrome and autism. Her follow-up article expands on practical strategies to promote inclusion:

My Son Has the Kind of Autism No One Talks About
Bonnie Zampiro, Huffington Post (blog) 28 September 2015
... The media shows us all of the feel-good stories, like the child with autism who gets to be the manager of the high school basketball team, or the boy with autism who goes to the prom with the beautiful girl, or the girl with autism who is voted onto the homecoming court. We light it up blue every April and pat ourselves on the back for being so aware.

But we aren’t aware ...
Bonnie Zampiro, Huffington Post (blog), 2 October 2016
... those who commented showed me that I was wrong. You are aware. You are aware of autism. You just don’t understand it ... 

What if I told you that both of us — you, with your typically functioning child and me, with my child with autism — could both do things together that would benefit the wellbeing of our children and that would enable all of our children to grow up to be their very best?
We can... if we want to. Many of you asked me for solutions. I have several ...

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