Adam’s Autism Journey
By: JooHee (Adam’s Mother)
Before coming to ABC, Adam was almost completely nonverbal. He also had a lot of behavior issues and a lot of tantrums. We just weren’t sure what to do with those. Ultimately, he was just unable to communicate and that was the biggest frustration for us, as well as for him.
After getting Adam’s Autism diagnosis, I’ll admit that I was a bit overwhelmed at first in trying to decide what to do for my child. We wanted Adam to develop enough skills (language, social, behavior, etc.) to be as independent as possible someday when he’s an adult. While we may not know what that looks like for him yet, we just knew that school was simply not the right environment for him. We wanted to find a place that specialized in ABA and was able to give that dedicated one-on-one attention.
We began looking around centers and we immediately loved ABC. We took a tour of one of their centers and it just felt right for us. That, paired with the fact that the owner of ABC has a son with Autism, really confirmed our decision.
After coming to ABC, it has been an amazing transformation. He is definitely more verbal. He is able to communicate his thoughts and his needs. He can even express his feelings. I will never forget the first time he said to me “mommy, I’m mad. I don’t like that.” I was absolutely floored and so excited at his ability to calmly express himself.
I’ll never forget the first time that he came home and started talking about the kids in his program. He referred to them as friends and he talked about them and talked about what he did with them. That is such an important thing to hear as a mother.
The amount and severity of tantrums have also greatly reduced since he started at ABC. That is something that really impacts you as a parent. I always wondered “will I be able to take him out to a store? Will I be able to take him out to a restaurant? How do I deal with this?” But now I take him everywhere. He listens to my instructions and stays by me the whole time. Now he is so much fun to take around!
Another big ABC transformation for Adam was through his haircutting program. Everyone needs a haircut and ABC offers a haircut desensitization program that, I have to say, is outstanding.
Before ABC, we would try to cut his hair at home and literally it was just tantrums and tears. I would hold him down and hug him. He would be crying. He was an absolute mess while my husband was trying to cut his hair because he couldn’t stand the clippers. We absolutely dreaded it but it was something that we had to do.
When we came to ABC, that was one of the first program goals that we worked on. Now he will sit there and giggle and he will verbalize “that tickles.” To go from tantrums and having to hold him down to being able to stand and laugh with him is just an indescribable transformation.
Adam has come so far and we are so proud of him. I cannot give enough examples of how much our child has progressed through his therapy at The Applied Behavior Center for Autism. We are so pleased with the results of his ABA therapy and look forward to the progress that our child will yet make.