Author to visit Carmel library to discuss supporting autistic community

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Learning through shared experience can sometimes offer more insight than advice from a clinician. That’s what inspired Jenna Gensic to write the book, “What Your Child on the Spectrum Really Needs: Advice From 12 Autistic Adults.”

Gensic will discuss her book and what she learned while writing it at 1 p.m. March 24 in Carmel Clay Public Library’s program room.

Gensic

“My oldest son was born prematurely in 2008, and he eventually received an autism diagnosis when he was 4,” Gensic said. “That diagnosis was delayed because he was so premature. Medical experts constantly surrounded (us) who offered us advice and things to do.”

Gensic realized she had never spoken to anyone else in the autistism community about their experience with the disorder.

“I started speaking with adults with autism discussing what helped or hurt them growing up,” Gensic said. “I was surprised to find they weren’t as interested in talking about medical advice. A lot of them focused on how they wanted to be treated. That was a revelation for me.”

Gensic spent the next five years reaching out to the autistic community, and she came up with the idea to write a guide book of sorts for parents.

“I explain how you can help your child in all sorts of different areas of life grow up to be self-confident as an autistic person and succeed despite it,” Gensic said.

The book is based on 12 extensive interviews and is meant to teach neurotypical parents different ways of thinking about their autistic children.

“Traditionally, that community is marginalized and maybe even discredited for being autistic, and that’s a real problem,” Gensic said. “There is value there.”

Gensic will have copies of the book available for purchase at a discounted price. The event is free. Registration is not required. For more, visit carmel.lib.in.us.

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