Monday, August 27, 2012

Labor Day Autism Event

Here is a great event that will take place in Royal Oak Michigan this weekend.  This year's annual Arts, Beats, and Eats festival will include Autism Family Fun Days.  This event will take place this Saturday, September 1st at little to no cost to parents.  Some activities offered include arts and crafts among other fun things to do.  This event is sponsored by Autism Alliance in association with Autism Speaks.  For more information on signing up, click here.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Survey Shows Pets Improve Social Skills

Autism can be very difficult sometimes.  Believe me; I have high functioning autism, so I know.  At the same time, I know of many things that have helped make the experience a little easier.  One of them was my cat, Tippy.  One night in August just two months before I was first diagnosed with autism, my aunt brought a kitten to our home.  A scrawny black and white tornado of energy.  His one distinctive feature was that his tail was black but the tip was white.  So we named him Tippy.

This cat really bonded with me. Even now, he is lying behind me, on the sofa, keeping watch.  When I got home today he trotted up to me, his eyes seeming to smile with unreserved joy, and he meowed at me.  He has slept in my room for the past twelve years.  When I get a place of my own sometime in the next year, my plan is to take Tippy with me.  He is twelve right now and in seemingly good health.  Hopefully he still has a number of good years left in him.

A study was recently conducted that explained how introducing a pet into the family can improve the social skills of children with autism. Quoting my source: "Researchers found that children with autism who got a pet after age 5 showed improvement in their abilities to share with others and to offer comfort, whereas those who had a pet since they were born, and those who never had a pet, showed no such improvement."

This is a topic that I have touched on before on previous posts on The Voice from the Spectrum, and I would like to take this opportunity to share another great link.  To read more, click here:

Monday, August 20, 2012

If You Missed the Show...

In the film the "Bucket List," Morgan Freeman's character asks two questions:  Have you found joy in your life?  And: Has your life brought joy to others?  Today's broadcast answered both of those questions.  I found joy while on the air, being the best I could possibly be, and I made about 20 teenagers with autism very happy with my own inspirational story and their involvement with today's program.  Not only that but I got to interview a Hollywood celebrity: Joey Travolta, the older brother of John Travolta!  If you missed the show, click here to tune in on demand:

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Man Denied Needed Heart Transplant because of Autism

Here is a truly devastating failure by the health community to respect the differences associated with autism.  Paul Corby, a twenty three year old man, was denied a heart transplant that might save his life, apparently because of his autism.  The request to placed on the waiting list for a heart transplant was denied by a physician at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania.   The doctor in question wrote the following statement back to the man's mother: "'I have recommended against transplant given his psychiatric issues, autism, the complexity of the process, multiple procedures and the unknown and unpredictable effect of steroids on behavior.'" (click here to see my source).  This left the Paul's mother "devastated."

This hits me on a very personal level.  Why should a person who is on the autism spectrum be treated differently than anyone else?  Another source following this story states that more than 3000 people die while waiting for a heart transplant, and that is when they have been placed on the waiting lists.  Paul has been denied that very chance.  This second article also produces the difficult question: who can decide whether a life is not worth saving?

What are your thoughts about this story?  Feel free to leave any comments you might have below.

Junior Positively Autistic: Ryan's Spectrum Talk 08/20 by Positively Autistic | Blog Talk Radio

During this broadcast, host I will talk about the film camp ran by Joey Travolta that is taking place this week at Oakland University in Rochester Michigan.  This hasn't been finalized yet, but I might be able to walk around and give a first person account of the film camp while seeing the different activties first hand.  Either way, it will surely be a very exciting show live from Oakland University in Rochester Michigan.
This show will air on Monday, August 20th at 1 pm EST, 10 am PST, and 6 pm UK time.
Remember that you can participate in the chat room, and you can also call into the show by dialing (619) 393-2848.  Tune into what will surely be another great show!

Junior Positively Autistic: Ryan's Spectrum Talk 08/20 by Positively Autistic | Blog Talk Radio

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Soccer Players Score One for Autism

Some soccer players in Grayslake Illinois showed some real sportsmanship in last week.  The Grayslake Central High school soccer team participated in a 5K run for autism on August 11th.  Apart from learning how to give back to the community, the soccer players were winners of the 5K in two age groups.  The team has supported the autism cause for the past four years.  Click here for more information about this event.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Autism CAN BE an Advantage!

I say all the time on Junior Positively Autistic: Ryan's Spectrum Talk that we focus far too much on the disadvantages of living on the spectrum and not enough time on how autism can be an advantage.  That being said, this article was really a breath of fresh air to read, especially reading a debate arguing whether autism is a "disease."  I strongly believe that, under the right conditions, someone on the autism spectrum can literally change the world.  It's nice to hear that others agree.  To read more about this topic, click here.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Junior Positively Autistic: Ryan's Spectrum Talk 08/13 by Positively Autistic | Blog Talk Radio

Tune into the next broadcast of Junior Positively Autistic: Ryan's Spectrum Talk.  This show will air at the regular time: 1 pm EST, 10 am PST, and 6 pm UK time.  During this show, Ryan will discuss the complicated topic of what autistic identity means to him.  He will also touch on the differences of identity between higher functioning and lower functioning individuals with autism.  Remember, you can participate in the chat room posting any appropriate content you might have.  You can also call into the show by dialing (619) 393-2848 or through Skype.  Tune into what will surely be another insightful and inspirational broadcast.

Junior Positively Autistic: Ryan's Spectrum Talk 08/13 by Positively Autistic | Blog Talk Radio

Friday, August 10, 2012

Autistic Decals on Cars?

What do you think about this idea?  A man in Texas is pushing for decals to be manufactured and provided for drivers who are on the autism spectrum.  This, he says, will give police and emergency officials the information they need to make appropriate decisions based on the individual's specific needs.  For more information, click here.  I personally think that this is a good idea because, if a high functioning individual with autism is pulled over, for whatever reason, the pressure of the situation could trigger a meltdown.  This would give law enforcement officials the necessary information they need to know that their own safety is not compromised. There should also be training in place for law enforcement officials so that they know how to react to a situation such as that.  The same with fire fighters and emergency respond personnel.  These are my thoughts on this idea.  Feel free to leave your thoughts in the comment box below.

Going for the Gold at the Rebecca Olympics

While the 2012 Summer Olympics draw to a close in the United Kingdom, a school in New York City is hosting some Olympic inspired events themselves.  The Rebecca School for developmentally disabled children in Manhattan held events of their own for the children with autism who attend in celebration of the Olympic events occurring "across the pond," as the English say.

Over the past week, the Rebecca School has transformed their gym into an Olympic Stadium.  Events ranging from shot put to sprinting where held.  While the children on the spectrum might not necessarily lack the physical strength needed to participate in shot put, due to the neurological nature of autism, information processing is often the key hindering issue in such events.  For more information about this event, click here.

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Meet Hannah Kandel

Here is an article about an outstanding young lady who is on the autism spectrum.  She is an aspiring artist and actress who is inspired, like so many others, by the example set by Temple Grandin.  Another credit to the sea of autism success stories that have emerged and continue to emerge into mainstream news.  To read more about Hanna Kandel's wonderful story, click here.

Cat's Make Things More Real to Me...

Some recent studies have indicated that the presence of a pet in a household with autistic children can have very beneficial results.  This is something that I could have claimed a long time ago.  There hasn't been a point in my life when there has not been a least one pet in the house.  At present, we have four cats at home.  The oldest cat, Tippy, has kind of claimed me as his human.  The feeling is mutual.

Right now as I am writing this, Tippy is laying behind me on the couch, snoozing.  He always greets me when I come home, and will meow at me in an indignant way if I'd been gone for too long.  The only negative thing I can say about him is that instead of laying on my chest sometimes, he crouches and that hurts.

Animals, particularly cats, make things more real for me. Recently, I read a book with a sad ending but I did not feel a strong emotional response until a cat that had been present in the story showed remorse for the events that transpired in that story.  Then, I was overwhelmed with sadness and had to hide in my room because I didn't want my family to see me crying.  Cats make things real for me.  They bring a level of understanding to situations that I just don't get any other way.  So, I can validate this study firsthand.

To read more about this topic, click here.

Junior Positively Autistic: Ryan's Spectrum Talk 08/06 by Positively Autistic | Blog Talk Radio

Tune into the next broadcast of Junior Positively Autistic: Ryan's Spectrum Talk. This broadcast will feature special guest, Brent Anderson and his mother Linda Anderson as they talk about the book they have written together called "Uninte
ntional Humor." Those on the autism spectrum may not understand common phrases that we all throw around so carelessly. Such as, "it's raining cats and dogs," or "he has a frog in his throat." Unintentional Humor describes how Brent, who is on the autism spectrum, literally views these phrases and more. The show will air at the regular time at 1 pm EST, 10 am PST, and 6 pm UK time. As always, you can participate in the chat room and offer any appropriate content you might have. Also, if you would like to call into the show to share feedback or ask questions, you can do so by dialing (619) 393-2848 or by calling in through Skype. Tune into what will surely be another great broadcast!

Junior Positively Autistic: Ryan's Spectrum Talk 08/06 by Positively Autistic | Blog Talk Radio