Autism Deserves Equal Coverage Foundation

Connor's Story

My name is Connor Sheehy. I am writing this blog as a living example of the potential of proper autism treatment. Please read this letter and consider donating to my mom’s non profit so she can help more kids like me. This spring I flew down with my mom to Los Angeles and introduced her at a conference where she helped Medi-Cal families access the new Medi-Cal benefit. This is the speech I gave. It was a big deal for me to speak in front of 50 people. When I was in first grade, I couldn’t even talk in front of my mom for a school project. This is the speech I gave at the Medi-Cal conference which will help you see how life-changing a donation to Autism Deserves Equal Coverage Foundation can be. Please donate today!!

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From, Connor Sheehy

My Speech at the Tools For Transformation Conference
April 11, 2015

My name is Connor Sheehy. I am here today as a living example of the potential of proper autism treatment. When I was little, I had a mild form of autism.  As you probably know, autism makes kids have difficulties in social interaction, verbal and nonverbal communication and repetitive behaviors.  The outcomes of people with autism can vary from someone who cannot communicate at all and need special care their whole life, to people like Albert Einstein and Bill Gates, who people think had autism.  Some people with autism never will be able to talk, or will have a very hard time making friends.  I didn't make my first friend until kindergarten.  When I was little, I was so overwhelmed by all the noises on the soccer field, that I couldn't even walk on it.  So my parents had to put me in a little tent to block out all the visions and noises so I could just watch soccer.  Later on I played four years of competitive soccer.  When I was a little older than I was when I was watching soccer from the tent, I started playing baseball. When the ball was hit to my feet, everyone knew that I wasn't going to get it because my brain couldn't process everything fast enough, so the nearest person would run over and make the play for me.  But now, I am a baseball umpire and make all the calls myself and in 6th grade I played second base in the championship game of the 11-12 year old division. All of this was possible because my parents had me go to all of these occupational therapy and speech classes and behavioral health treatment.  My parents and I worked really hard to minimize of all of those autism symptoms that without treatment, people can't get rid of, but because of all of the hard work, and a little luck, I have barely any of the symptoms left.  I have also begun to appreciate the strengths that having autism has given me. For example I am stronger at math and science than language arts because I am detail oriented and have a harder time focusing on the big picture which is what writing is. It made me appreciate the value of struggle and the potential payoff you can get from it. Finally I inspired my mom to co-found Autism Deserves Equal Coverage in 2009 and Autism Deserves Equal Coverage Foundation in 2013, so that other kids with autism could have access to the same opportunities that I did and so parents could have hope. Now my mom is going to teach you how to access these treatments for your children and I am really happy to be here to help her.

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