Today I want to share a blog entry from “non-verbal” autistic teenager Henry, who uses AAC to communicate. I believe he’s no longer a teenager and no longer blogging, now (or not blogging on this platform) but he makes excellent points about the need for AAC.
I wish someone had offered us AAC when my little girl lost all her words. Maybe she wouldn’t have been silent for so long, if we had helped her when she was 18 months old, instead of crying about her speech regression. (Don’t get me wrong–it’s STILL sad to me, when I go days without hearing her beautiful voice–but that’s *my* pain, and as her mother, I have no right to make her aware of, or responsible for, that pain.)
My son started talking when he wanted to (age 3) and despite obvious delays and the heavy use of scripted language (which sometimes requires an interpreter, for lack of a better word) I’m not sure he’d have ever used AAC. But–I wish we had known that was an option, I wish we could’ve made him aware that it was an option, and then, the choice would have been his, not society’s.
But don’t take my word for how necessary AAC is. Take Henry’s: