It was awesome.
There were two parallel tracks. A track for spectrum teens 12-19 was led by Jeannie Uhlenkamp, author of The Guide to Dating for Teenagers with Asperger Syndrome. A session for professionals and parents was led by Sara Pahl and Dawn Brasch. The teen track would have been challenging given the variety of interests and learning features. My track is best summarized as “so we’re not the only ones”; between #1 and #2 I could have spoken to every topic. (And suggested a bunch of additional topics for a future “advanced” track.)
The frank discussion of the legal aspects of spectrum sexuality and choices was particularly appreciated.
This needs to be turned into a video series for wider use. I understand the AUSM has plans in that direction.
For now, here is a reading list from today’s session:
- The Guide to Dating for Teenagers With Asperger Syndrome: Jeannie Uhlenkamp: 9781934575536 (by the speaker). Despite the title this also works for #1, who is on spectrum but not Asperger.
- Dating For Dummies: Joy Browne: 9780470892053: Amazon.com: Books. Not written for spectrum teens, but recommended by speakers.
- Socially Curious and Curiously Social: A Social Thinking Guidebook for Bright Teens and Young Adults: Michelle Garcia Winner, Pamela Crooke: 9780884272021 (illustrated)
- Decoding Dating: A Guide to the Unwritten Social Rules of Dating for Men with Asperger Syndrome (Autism Spectrum Disorder): John Miller: 9781849057806
- The Autism Playbook for Teens: Imagination-Based Mindfulness Activities to Calm Yourself, Build Independence, and Connect with Others (The Instant Help Solutions Series): Irene McHenry PhD, Carol Moog PhD, Susan Kaiser Greenland JD: 9781626250093
- The Aspie Teen's Survival Guide: Candid Advice for Teens, Tweens, and Parents, from a Young Man with Asperger's Syndrome: J. D. Kraus: 9781935274162