Author: isaac-autism-in-the-wild

Episode #34 | Guilt of Working Parents

Episode #34 | Guilt of Working Parents

For years I have struggled with complicated emotions of whether to work outside the home to earn an income to help support my family and the added expense of raising a child with special needs versus staying home to be able to dedicate more time to my children and pursue additional interventions for my struggling child.  It was no surprise that there was a tremendous amount of parent interest in participating in this topic discussion. In this podcast you will hear different parent pro and con perspectives related to working outside the home as well as perspectives from parents who staying home to focus their attention on raising their children.

*this episode contains adult language.

Episode #33 | Step-Parent Challenges

Episode #33 | Step-Parent Challenges

Marriage takes work. This is a common sentiment that rings true for most couples.  In prior episodes we have discussed the toll that can be taken on a marriage while parenting your own children with special needs, but on this special episode we focused on an additional niche, parenting a step-child with autism.  Or on the opposite side of this topic, working with exes and new step-parents to your child.  Emotions can run high when discussing health/safety/discipline needs with an outside yet permanent second party.

Listen in as our panel of autism parents discusses their personal journey through parenting their children/step-children with special needs and maintaining/rebuilding their personal relationships.

Episode #32 | Autism & Divorce

Episode #32 | Autism & Divorce

It is no secret, having a child with autism can be hard.  Hard on your emotional health, family dynamics, and ultimately can be hard on your marriage.  With the average divorce rate in America hovering around 50% adding the strife of chronic doctor/therapy appointments and the stress of paying for said appointments can bring many couples to the brink of divorce.

On the flip side, many parents say that the need for constant communication regarding their children with special needs has strengthened their marriage by forcing them to delve in to the uncomfortable topics and promoting healthy communication across the board.

Listen in as our panel of autism parents discusses their personal journey through parenting their children with special needs and maintaining/rebuilding their personal relationships.

Episode #31 | Coffee Chat with Tanya Holmes

Episode #31 | Coffee Chat with Tanya Holmes

Tanya Holmes has been a regular guest on ISAAC’s Autism in the Wild podcast since it’s launch in 2019.  Each time she joins me, she brings her unique experience as not just a mother, but also a primary school counselor and teacher. While Tanya’s demeanor is soft and more reserved, she is not afraid to challenge her school district when it comes to advocating for the needs of her child in the classroom and fighting for the IEP she knows her child is legally entitled to have.  Tanya has taken more IEP workshops of any parent I know – which is why I refer so many of my struggling families her direction.  I call her my IEP legal eagle.

Episode #30 | Self-Advocate Taylor Crisp

Episode #30 | Self-Advocate Taylor Crisp

I have had the pleasure of getting to know self-advocate Taylor Crisp since the summer of 2019. Don’t let Taylor’s quiet demeanor fool you.  While timid at first, Taylor is not afraid to open up about her experiences growing up in a time where fitting in with her peers meant hiding her autism diagnosis from her friends.  Taylor is also a mother and shares some of her experiences raising her young daughter.

In this episode, Taylor and I talk more about:

  • labels and the struggles of wanting to be liked by others
  • how she came out of her shell in high school
  • fears and things she wishes she could do differently
  • recommendations for parents who are raising children with autism.
Episode #29 | Pepping Kids with ASD for College

Episode #29 | Pepping Kids with ASD for College

15 years ago, college opportunities for individuals affected by autism spectrum disorders was practically unheard of.  In the few cases I came across, the opportunity was made possible by a dedicated parent who attended each class with their loved one to help provide the one-on-one support their child needed.  Thankfully, this is no longer the case.  There are many universities within Washington and throughout the United States that are either specifically for students with special needs or universities who have added programs that support these individuals.

In this podcast episode Doug Piehl, retired national director of college planning for Thrivent Financial, joined me to discuss the options he saw in his position with Thrivent and things parents can be doing to help prepare not just their child with ASD but also their neuro-typical child for post secondary education.  Believe it or not – you can start planning as early as 8th GRADE!

Doug Piehl, while retired, may be reached at Piehldouglas@gmail.com for specific college planning questions.

Episode #28 | Creating Sensory Friendly Spaces

Episode #28 | Creating Sensory Friendly Spaces

Carter Crandall of Blythe Interiors, is not just an Interior Designer, she is an autism mom.  Carter joins us this week to discuss elements within our environment (both at home and in classrooms) that should be considered when working to make spaces MORE sensory friendly.  Carter tells us that ALL spaces can be made to be sensory friendly for all people (at the same time) and these interior adjustments don’t have to break the bank!

As promised, you can learn more about Carter and Blythe Interiors at: https://www.blytheinteriors.com/carter-crandall

Email: Carter@blytheinteriors.com

Episode #27 | Parent Strife

Episode #27 | Parent Strife

As parents, it is difficult to agree on every single decision when raising children. It becomes even more difficult when you raise children with special needs.  In this episode, we discuss:

  • Root causes that seem to cause the most parent strife;
  • How parents have found compromise;
  • When divorce is a factor; and
  • What happens when compromise cannot be reached.
Episode #26 | Long-Term Care Estate Planning Discussion

Episode #26 | Long-Term Care Estate Planning Discussion

I believe that one of the most difficult conversations that a parent must have is on the topic of planning for a life-long special needs dependent upon your death. In this episode of ISAAC’s Autism in the Wild, a group of parents joined me with our special guest Randi Johnson, Attorney at Law, to discuss a variety of issues such as:

  • Structuring special needs trusts for life-long dependents
  • Protecting assets for your special needs child so that they do not compromise edibility with social security.
  • The benefits of choosing an outside representative to oversee the special needs trust rather than a sibling or other family member.
  • Differences between guardianship and limited guardianship
  • Age when guardianship process should be initiated
  • When a special needs trust should be created

As promised, our guest Randi Johnson of Lilac City Law may be reached for further questions or to schedule a consultation at (509) 624-1610.

Episode #25 | Adulting with ASD – a self-advocate’s perspective

Episode #25 | Adulting with ASD – a self-advocate’s perspective

In this episode of ISAAC’s Autism in the wild, I had the pleasure to sit down and interview Clara’s (episode 23, Perspectives Over Time) daughter, Sophie Strom, who was diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder as a young girl. Sophie, now in her twenties, tells us what it was like growing up in a time when very little was understood about ASD.  Sophie shares her experiences overcoming sensory processing challenges and insights that parents raising young children will not want to miss.  There is no way that you will walk away from this podcast NOT feeling absolutely inspired.