Asperger's Syndrome Guide for Teens and Young Adults Thriving (not Just Surviving)
by Craig Kendall is one of the most inclusive books on Asperger teens that I have had the privilege to read. Kendall takes you through the steps of what to expect as the AS teen is leaving elementary school moving into middle and high schools, through puberty and dating, through the trials and tribulations of bullying and cyber bullying, and into the young adult stage. All of these times are very trying for the AS teenager as well as their caregivers and Kendall has again made things as easy to understand as possible.
He notes throughout the book that not all AS children are the same and that circumstances will vary according to the child; yet he offers options which benefit the well being of the AS teen. For example, intellectual abilities are not necessarily affected by Asperger's Syndrome; however the stimuli around the child may be causing some academic issues. Thus, we should evaluate what is causing the child's problem instead of jumping to conclusions. Kendall's knowledge and grace on the subject matter is astounding and beyond sufficient. With the experiences that he had to endure with his own son with Asperger's Syndrome, Kendall brought to life this disorder through his words of wisdom in laymen's terms for everyone to understand; doctors, teachers, parents, and even teenagers themselves can benefit greatly from this book.
Kendall's bonus chapters include life beyond high school, succeeding in the workplace, college issues, surveys for bullying for schools, and a guide to the Individualized Education Program. All of these are extremely helpful and he goes into great detail about the IEP's which will help parents during their travel within the school system. Life doesn't stop for these children. It goes on with the same difficulties; they just need help in understanding them and how to work around them. This is what Kendall explains in the Asperger's Syndrome Guide for Teens and Young Adults Thriving (not Just Surviving)
. He helps parents help their children and be able to thrive as a family unit as well. By doing this, they learn how to become good citizens in society, even if society isn't quite ready for them just yet.
I have my own son who is moving into the teen years, and I was completely bewildered and scared before reading Kendall's book. Afterwards, I felt calm and ready to take on the next few years and help my son to the best of my abilities and understand what to expect; I knew what to do, thanks to this book. Kendall notes that there are support groups out there, or to create one yourself if one isn't available. This is what I had to do in my area and am still on the bumpy road to success. I am recommending all of Kendall's books to everyone because of his depth of knowledge in this area. His experiences have hit home with me and will to many others. This book is definitely a must read for parents with an Asperger child.
President --The Asperger's Child, Inc.
About the Author
I am the author of several books on autism and Asperger's syndrome, a form of high functioning autism.
*** My Journey...Finding information that truly helps a loved one on the autism spectrum is a challenge. I know. I have been there.
But eventually I was able to find the information I desperately needed to help my son, Alex, who has Asperger's syndrome, finally enjoy a "normal" life and do all the things you take for granted -- like make and keep friends, do well in school, get along well with friends and neighbors, treat family members with love and respect and enjoy an active social life.
*** Several Years Ago I Was Standing In Your Shoes...I was typing the phrase "Asperger's Syndrome" and "autism" into every search engine
on the Internet just hoping to find a magic solution
that would help.
I read through website after website trying to track down answers. I searched for reasons, guidance, even just someone to talk to. All I found was the same old rehashed information ... nothing useful. And certainly nothing that told me how to help a loved one cope with Asperger's.
It was incredibly frustrating. I was literally at the end of my rope
... because every day seemed like one long, never-ending bad dream that I couldn't wake up from.
You see, my son, Alex, who has Asperger's Syndrome, was in the middle of a major Asperger's episode
... he was terribly unhappy. It was so difficult to communicate with him. He was running away from home and couldn't get along with any of his peers. All the days of worrying and yelling had taken their toll on my wife and me (the same feeling you've probably had with taking care of your loved one -- the stress is incredible, isn't it?).
*** I needed answers...
The Internet was just the start for me. I devoured everything I could find at the library
, including boring, technical medical journals and dozens of books. I tracked down every Asperger's expert
I could find. And during our journey, my wife and I went from knowing nothing about Asperger's and having NO idea how to help him ... to becoming an expert who has been able to help him build friendships, stay organized and do well in school.***
Other Parents Advice Was a Godsend...I spoke with literally hundreds of other parents
. I learned what worked and what didn't.
And after my months of research ... I can tell you one thing for sure: if you're supporting a loved one with Asperger's, you have a better chance of winning one of those multi-state lotteries than of finding the information you need to help your loved one SUCCESSFULLY cope with Asperger's.
I must have read every book written but I still had unanswered questions. The books I did find spend most of the time talking about what Asperger's is and why people have Asperger's Syndrome, but they never talked about the kinds of issues I was facing with my son
... such as how to get the right treatment, what treatments work, how to make long lasting friends, how to help them get a good job, etc.
*** I Decided To Learn Everything There Was To Know...
After that, I decided to work full time on my Asperger's research in order to learn everything that I could about Asperger's Syndrome.
I contacted support groups, conducted surveys and interviewed people.
All of my research was worth it. Today, my son has friends and is happy. He does well in school. I never thought we would get to this point. I hope my research and books, and the knowledge I have gained, can help others find the success and happiness that my family has found.