Autism doesn’t end when your child turns 22.
That is among the many messages movingly delivered in a new television documentary, “Autism: Coming of Age.” The film, produced by award-winning filmmaker Catherine Sager for Springfield, Massachusetts public television station WGBY, and sponsored by the Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company (MassMutual), highlights the lives of three families and the challenges they face finding and retaining supportive care.
- Dan Ryan is learning how to be as independent as possible as an adult. While he has made great progress, like banking and going food shopping, he still believes in the power of super heroes.
- Doug Murray works in a Boston hotel doing light maintenance and vacuuming – a passion since childhood. Most days, Doug is up at 5:30 a.m., takes two buses to work, and always arrives an hour early to say hello to all his friends. He continues to live at home, but wants a family and home of his own, his father explains in the film.
- Tomas Espinosa, whose diagnosis places him on the autism spectrum with an intellectual disability, is also non-verbal. He lives in his own home with 24/7 care. He has a roommate, loves to roller skate, play baseball, and spend time with his family.
For further information about to assist families on the journey from adolescence to adulthood, please check out the Autism Speaks Family Services Transition Tool Kit.