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In the last few weeks, there’s been increased attention given to a phrase that so many parents raising children with ASD fear: transition to adulthood. Parents face a feeling of desperation as their children age out of the system that has supported them in an educational setting. There are currently far less supports for adults than there are for children.

Recently, The New York Times highlighted this issue that every family living with Autism comes to face at some point.

“Best Kept Secret” is a documentary about “A Newark, NJ public high school teacher racing a ticking clock to find a place in the world for her students with Autism before they graduate and age out of their rare support system.” A successful kickstarter campaign helped make this documentary come to fruition.

The Story of Luke” (view trailer on YouTube) is a film based on the experience of writer/director Alonso Mayo, who observed many people with Autism being faced with the challenge of transitioning into a new phase of their lives. Mayo’s mother runs a school in Peru for individuals with developmental disabilities. This movie is positioned as a comedy, though it details the struggle of one Autistic young man yearning for the same opportunities as his typically developing peers.

Even MTV is promoting Autism Awareness/Acceptance with their show “World of Jenks”, in which host Andrew Jenks documents the experience of Chad DenDanto, a 21 year old man with Pervasive Developmental Disorder and ADHD, learn tools for advocating for himself as an adult. Andrew Jenks has said he found the “opportunity to humanize and destigmatize what it’s like to have Autism” and that ASD is something prevalent enough to garner mainstream media’s attention.

Online resources for transitioning to adulthood on the Autism Spectrum:

Autism Speaks’ Transition Tool Kit

Autism Society’s Transitions