Kaiser Permanente has agreed to pay up to $9 million to settle a class action that alleged the health plan illegally refused to provide behavioral therapy for autistic children before it was mandated by state law.
Have you ever felt like you were alone and no one understood what you were going through? I have to be honest, in the first year after my son was diagnosed with Autism, I felt that way a great deal of the time. For me that feeling of isolation got better over time. I was lucky that some people reached out their hands and showed me that my family’s journey was a group marathon, not a solo sprint. Those helping hands made all the difference and I am forever grateful to them. But if I’m completely honest there are still days, 7 years after we first got that diagnosis, that I marvel at the sometime complete lack of compassion for what my son has gone through, and what so many other families dealing with Autism are going through. “Where is the compassion, where is the perspective taking from people who are supposedly neuro-typical??!!!” I sometimes rage. Those moments leave me feeling powerless and I’ve decided to do something about it.
As I surf the web for the latest news concerning autism, I try to keep an eye out for articles describing new programs developed to better accommodate children with autism and their families. To me, such programs signify an increase in autism awareness and acceptance in our communities. This week one particular program caught my eye.
Families affected by Autism feel stress on a completely different level than other families with typically developing children. Every milestone, every setback is felt a hundred times over. I am in awe of the parents who fight to get their children the services they need on top of all the other things they are completely each day. They are heroes for their children in my eyes.
Baking cookies is a time-honored tradition for many families during the holidays. When I was younger, my mom and I would bake cookies every Christmas Eve. Before going to bed, we would leave a plate of cookies and a tall glass of milk on the table for Santa. We would also leave a dish of cookies and a saucer of milk by the foot of the table for Rudolph.