My daughter turns 21 in 14 years. I cannot imagine the fear and anxiety I will feel on her 20th birthday. She will be pushed off a cliff into nothingness after having 1:1 education and instruction since she was three years’ old. 21 is not a MAGIC age where children with autism transform into perfectly functioning adults. And there is no accommodation for them. They are abandoned. Where will she live? Where will she work? What happens when I die? What if I can’t afford to house her or feed her? What if she is self-harming or violent? What if she regresses?
These questions repeat over and over in my head. It takes everything you have – emotionally, financially, physically – to accommodate the needs of a child with autism. With an adult, it is nearly impossible because no one has THAT many resources.
I do hope the future is brighter. I do hope the work us parents have to do pays off before my daughter turns 21. She has so much to give this world and her livelihood is at stake.