CHICAGO, Dec. 18, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Jeanne Beard, a speaker, author, coach, autism parent and director of the National Autism Academy, is featured in a new book by actress Jane Seymour called Your Road Ahead: Inspirational Stories of Open Hearts and Minds (Post Hill Press-Dec. 2017). Beard's essay discusses the difficult journey she faced as a parent of a child diagnosed with autism that led her to become an advocate for families like hers. The book's foreword was written by Kim Campbell, widow of country and pop singer Glen Campbell.
One in 68 children are diagnosed with autism every year, Beard points out, as was her son, in 2006. Although at the time she was relieved to get a diagnosis after years of trying to find out what was wrong with him, she quickly discovered that she was on her own in dealing with his condition. She writes: "So many parents are simply given a diagnosis and handed the checkout paperwork. No support is given, no guidance is offered and no recommendations are provided about where to turn next. It is devastating news made worse by the lack of any direction, support or encouragement."
She continued: "It was because of my experience – the confusion, uncertainty and pain of not knowing how to find real help, the grief of having no answers, and the transformation we experienced – that I decided to create a support system for families faced with autism." She wanted them to find answers she found much more quickly than she did.
Beard's National Autism Academy offers online resources so parents better understand how autism affects their child and the rest of the family, and how to create success in life in spite of the existence of the autism. There is also guidance for grandparents, educators and other professionals who come in contact with autistic children.
Beard who has appeared on numerous radio programs, can discuss:
- Why autism is perhaps the world's most misunderstood diagnosis. It is not a disease that can be cured.
- What to say to someone whose child has just been diagnosed with autism.
- The 3 biggest strengths of autistic people.
- What can be done about the shortage of qualified psychologists and therapists who can assist families with autistic children.
About Jeanne Beard
Jeanne Beard, the author of Autism & The Rest Of Us, has decades of experience in the trenches with Asperger's Syndrome and autism spectrum disorders, and the people diagnosed with them. She was mentored by clinical expert Timothy Wahlberg, Ph.D., during the writing of his clinical guide, Finding the Gray: Understanding and Thriving in the Black and White World of Autism and Asperger's. A graduate of Northwestern University, Beard is the mother of two sons, one with Asperger's, the other with ADHD.
SOURCE Jeanne Beard