I get it.
You’ve got a son or daughter on the autism spectrum who’s about to graduate from high school. Like a deer caught in a car’s headlights, you’re frozen in place.
Too many unanswered questions and no visible road map for what happens next if what you’re hearing is, “Mom/Dad, I want to get a job.”
I get it because when my son graduated from high school in 2005, that’s what he told me. His formal Asperger’s diagnosis was a ‘Catch 22.” Yes, he was disabled but not disabled enough to qualify for medicaid waiver services.
Where do you start?
You start where all of us started: with an awesome resume and job readiness training.
One of the hottest topics for autistic adults is whether or not they should disclose the fact of their autism during a job interview. This is a very personal decision. The only correct answer is what feels right for each individual. If disclosure is right for your son/daughter, I can help with that.
And what about that resume? I can help with that.
Does your son/daughter need communication support? My son does. Because no one offered this support to him, I did. Together, my son and I created easy, conversational scripts for lots of work-related conversations.
And then we practiced.
It’s important that these “explaining scripts,” as I like to call them, always reflect the speaker’s voice. Speaking up using constructive dialogue is a skill that anyone can learn. And, I can help with that.
Subscribe to my e-newsletter for parenting tips and resources for those transition years after high school for young adults on the autism spectrum to receive my 10 page white paper about work-related “explaining scripts.”
Sometimes you have to coach the job coach
My son is eligible for job coaching as part of the vocational support he receives. What I’ve learned is that it’s important to keep a positive relationship with these folks. Just remember that sometimes you might have to coach them. 🙂
An example of this?
Although there are general characteristics of mild-moderate autism (formerly Asperger’s Syndrome Disorder), every person on the autism spectrum is unique.
If a job coach confides to you that they will be able to work with your son because they have a ten year old niece with Asperger’s, don’t assume that this job coach automatically qualifies for the “Asperger’s Syndrome Expert of the Year Award.” They don’t.
Part of your job is to help that job coach become an expert about your son or your daughter. And I can help with that.
Hello, my name is Kathy Porter: I’m a copywriter with a side of autism advocacy
The first thing you need to know about me is that I’ve been parenting for almost 30 years. The past 11 have been really hard because a lot of what’s in place to support autistic adults as they transition into the work place
really sucks could be better.
The second thing you need to know is that I’ve been the behind-the-scenes job coach and speech writer for my son who has Asperger’s Syndrome Disorder and a few other developmental disabilities for almost all of those 11 years.
I’ve made some mistakes, but I’ve also figured out what works. You can find out more about this by reading some of my published guest blog posts on Think Inclusive.
What I know is that language – both the spoken and written word – has the power to change lives. One of the greatest joys of my life has been the work I’ve done with my son to help him find his words (his voice) so that he can be on an equal playing field in the work place.
No one told me that teaching advocacy skills would be my most important job as a parent. It will be yours too. And I can help with that.
But enough about me. Let’s talk about you.
You’re looking for help. You came here because something caught your eye.
You’re the parent of a young adult on the autism spectrum between the ages of 16-30 or, perhaps, you’re a self-advocate on the autism spectrum.
You need a bit of guidance about how to get this job readiness thing started, you might need a smokin’ hot resume or you need some handy 1-2 sentence, work-related conversation starters for your kid … or for yourself.
You’re looking for a tutor/writing coach. As a former high school English teacher with 10 years as a private tutor, I might be able to help with that.
Maybe you just need to talk. That’s okay. I’m ready to listen.
You and me. We can figure this out. Together.
All you have to do is fill out the form on my site. Let me know what kind of help you’re looking for and I’ll be in touch.