As many of us know, April is Autism Awareness month however for my family and me every day is Autism Awareness day! There are many people in society that have no idea the struggles of dealing with a loved one who has Autism. People are unaware of the struggles we as parents go through every day because we are scared of going outside with their loved one. Society is so cruel to people who are slightly different.
I have been dealing with the struggles for years as my son Ravi who is 32 years old has severe autism. Unfortunately he aged out of the system of receiving help. We understand that now there are better programs for children and young adults with Autism, but what about the ones that have aged out of the system? Where is the help for them? There are adults that have autism and are able to speak about their struggles, work, make friends and live like how people without autism lives. But there is a percentage of adults who have it severe and are unable to work, speak, learn, make friend, etc. Where are the resources to help the families of autistic adults? It very hard for parents or family members to make a living when there is no help for their child.
I have created a non-profit organization called “Colors of Autism” to represent the many types, emotions and feelings families and individuals with Autism go through. We have been raising awareness by hosting fundraising events during the year because Autism isn’t just one day (April 2nd), it is everyday living for many people. Yes, some children and adults have it more severe than others, but people only seem to see and know about the less severe aspect about autism.
Society is used to seeing the less severe side of autism because families who has a child with severe autism are scared to be outside because of what people might say or think. Parents deal with people who aren’t educated on Autism Awareness every day. People are so quick to judge others without knowing their situation. This is why my family and I started the non-profit. We host these events to not only raise awareness but to educate society. Every parent only wants for their child to be accepted by others.
We also want for there to be more programs and funding to help anyone with Autism. There are programs for children and young adults but what about the ones that have already aged out or the ones that will age out eventually? That is why we raise awareness. Adults with autism have nowhere to go or nothing to do once they age out. There is also no help for the families struggling with everyday living expenses.
We need more programs and funding for these adults. There is something new to learn every day. Why are there not programs offered to adults? These are the questions that I hope to be answered someday soon. All we want is for people to be aware and for our loved ones to be treated with respect. There are many resources for people to educate themselves about Autism.
I will continue to fight with others to get the answers to the many questions we have. I will fight to make sure society is aware of the many “Color of Autism”. For me Autism Awareness isn’t just on April 2nd, it is every day.