Thursday, February 21, 2008

Successful Adult with Autism: "I'm an Anomaly"

This week I'm writing about adults on the spectrum with autism. Previously I wrote about the need for services and support and the challenges adults and/or their caregivers face in obtaining help.

However, I should note there are some adults on the spectrum who are quite successful. Some are well known and some are not. Today I will profile someone who may not be as well known as someone as say Temple Grandin. I found the story of Ruth Elaine on the Autism Society of America website. Ruth Elaine is a married grandmother who is the Midwest board director for ASA. Diagnosed at age 54, she previously graduated from college with honors and became successful in the clothing business before retiring to become a Reiki master/teacher "mentoring people on the autism spectrum."

Here is the rest of Ruth Elaine's inspiring story in her own words:

"One word that describes my journey with autism is anomaly; I was born with profound autism before it was known as a disorder. Nonverbal, I identified with Midnight, a Persian cat, until a neighbor insisted that I drink from a glass like a child, not lap milk from a saucer. Easily distracting myself with glittering lights and sparkling prisms, I spun myself through early childhood. A school principal, nurse, psychologist and the Girl Scouts helped me learn to talk, read and become socially appropriate, to save me from being sent to the institution for the mentally ill recommended by our doctor."

1 comment:

Elissa - Managing Autism said...

Thanks for sharing this story! It's great to be able to highlight and celebrate the lives of autistics.