The Faces of Autism: Meet Chelsea
Meet Chelsea, a 13 year old loving and patient young lady diagnosed with Autism.
Chelsea was diagnosed at 11 years old with an Autism Spectrum Disorder. Her mother knew something was "different" about her daughter but struggled to get answers to why her daughter had violent meltdowns and extreme changes in behavior.
Chelsea struggles with sensory issues, bathroom habits and hygeine. She is having difficulties with social situations and dealing with how her body is changing.
Chelsea and her mom live in a small rural community and are moving to Bismarck in order to get better services for Chelsea. Often times smaller communities do not have the capacity to handle children with special needs, and traveling to larger areas for the therapies needed becomes a huge financial burdern on top of the significant costs for having a child with special needs. (To learn more about the increased costs of having a child with Autism, THIS ARTICLE breaks it down some.) This move is another huge change that her mother anticipates to be difficult for Chelsea.
Chelsea loves rocks and gems and was excited to get her photo taken with them!
Her mom says that raising a child with Autism gives new meaning to raising a child and really rings true the fact that every child is different.
If you suspect your child may have an Autism Spectrum Disorder or they are already diagnosed, there are great supports in the community. One of my favorites is BisMan Autism Families on Facebook.
Please feel free to share Chelsea's story to bring Autism Awareness and Acceptance.