The Centers for Disease Control have released new data about autism in the United States. Now 1 in 68 children are on the autism spectrum and 1 in 42 of them are boys! This is alarming to me on several accounts, but here are two in particular: #1- My children are at the age where they ARE or WILL BE starting families of their own. For obvious reasons, just the idea that my children could have to raise a child on the spectrum sends me right over the edge. #2- I am nearly 50 years old and still caring for my son with autism, something Rep. Chris Smith from New Jersey addressed to the House of Representatives back in 2011. He said, "As aging parents can no longer take care of their children and are worried they don't have that many years left on earth, they are frightened about what happens to their beloved child, we need the aging out issue to be addressed and we need it now."
(Please read I May Never Be an Empty Nester to learn more about how I feel regarding this issue.)
I don't know what the answer is to this growing health crisis, but I do know that I can help by raising awareness. April is Autism Awareness Month and April 2, is Light It Up Blue. There are a couple of simple ways you can help. Make a donation to Autism Speaks and/or purchase blue light bulbs from your local Home Depot or hardware store and light up your home this coming Wednesday. Let's all be proactive in this fight against autism.