Living Your Best Life with Asperger's Syndrome: How a Young Boy and his Mother Deal with the Challenges and Joys of being Eleven, Brilliant and Socially Absent


Karra Barber

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    With love, I dedicate this book to Thomas – you are my treasure.


    First I'd like to thank my editor, Barbara Maines. Your sincere interest and support on this subject propelled me to complete this book. I'm indebted to Lucky Duck and SAGE for giving me the opportunity to share Thomas' journey.

    Scott, thank you for your confidence and unwavering belief in me. Thanks to my family and friends who encouraged me to write Thomas' stories and bring light to Asperger's syndrome. I am especially thankful to Brad Bunnin, Bob Huddleston, Linda Johnson and Gina Pardo. A special thank you to Dr. Tony Attwood.

    Barbara Trent, thank you for more than five years of consistency and steady influence in Thomas' life at school. To Carin Garton and Thomas' elementary school teachers - thanks for helping him grow and shine. I'm grateful to Clare Ames Klein, Karen Zuniga, Kim Wolfram and Jenna Krook for your insight and respect for Thomas.

    And to Marc, your generosity and wonderful spirit has enriched our lives immeasurably.

  • Epilogue


    Abbreviations and acronyms used in this book:

    ABAssembly Bill for California
    ADAAmerican Disabilities Act
    ASAsperger's syndrome
    ASDAutism Spectrum Disorder
    ATAssistive Technology
    CACCommunity Advisory Committee
    CASECommunity Alliance for Special Education
    DSM IVDiagnostic and Statistical Manual of the American Psychiatric Association
    FAPEFree Appropriate Public Education
    GFCFGluten Free & Casein Free
    IDEAIndividuals with Disabilities Education Act
    IEPIndividualised Education Program
    IQIntelligence Quotient
    LEALocal Education Agency
    LRELeast Restrictive Environment
    NLDNon-Verbal Learning Disorder
    OTOccupational Therapy
    PCPPrimary Care Physician
    PDDPervasive Developmental Disorder
    PTPhysical Therapy
    PAIProtection and Advocacy Incorporated
    RCEBRegional Center of the East Bay
    RSResource Specialist
    SBSenate Bill
    SELPASpecial Education Local Plan Area
    SHSeverely Handicapped
    SIDSensory Integration Dysfunction
    SLPSpeech and Language Pathologist


    Autistic Spectrum Resources
    Michelle Winner's Center for Social Thinking Pragmatic Language and Social Skills
    Michelle GarciaWinner, SLP
    The Gray Center for Social Learning & Understanding
    Gray, C. (2001) My Social Stories Book. London: Jessica Kingsley Publishers
    DavidBerg, Educational Therapist
    JeanetteMcAfee, M.D.
    Gluten Free Casein Free Diet
    Sensory Integration Therapy
    American Occupational Therapy Association
    Council for Exceptional Children
    Circle of Friends
    Forest, M. & Pearpoint, J. (1992) Commonsense Tools: Maps and Circles.
    Inclusion Papers. Toronto: Inclusion Press
    Forest, M. (1992) Inclusion Papers. Toronto: Inclusion Press
    Maines, B. & Robinson, G. (1998) All For Alex – A Circle of Friends. Bristol: Lucky Duck Publishing.
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