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June 19, 2014 | North America: Georgia

If u took the time to know you would know the only "R" to refer to me is in my name "RYAN"

By Michelle H.

"I am my Brother's Keeper"...I have Autism but I am just like my brother........

I had my son at 17 years old. He has Autism, has verbal challenges and at times displays stereotypical behavior due to anxieties. He is just like any other teenager: enjoys music, he likes to go out, he likes being included in social events, he loves sports and he loves cooking. He wants to be included, but sometimes his voice is not always heard. He is active and enjoys track and field. We have faced ridicule, dirty looks, lost friends, disgusted looks by friends, family and strangers that didn't understand. Nor did they take the time to understand. I even had someone on social media address my son with the "R" word. It was very hurtful and something I will never forget. I have fought to make sure he is included in all he can be and I will keep fighting. We have been on a Journey, it was rough in the beginning, professionals and others felt it was hopeless. I was told he wouldn't be verbal, I didn't believe. He is now verbal and improving everyday! I am so proud of him.

About Michelle H.: I have a child with Autism his voice is not always heard because of his verbal challenges. I will fight for him. I am doing my masters in Psychology/A.B.A to work with children/teens with Autism
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