Neurodiversity Resources,  Resources

The Big Neurodiversity Resource List

When my son was diagnosed with a triple-whammy of anxiety, ADHD and autism, I went to (what felt like) the end of the internet searching for insight, guidance and a person who had walked this path before me and shared their experience. I never quite found what I was looking for, so…I’m making it! This is the list that I wish someone would have given me and I am passing it on to you, my friend. Pssttt….there’s stuff for adults here too because I am still learning how to wrangle ADHD, PTSD and depression in my own brain.

Disclaimer-These are not sponsored or affiliate links, just resources that I personally use and love. This page is under construction, and more resources are continuously added. If you’d like to know when new sections and resources are added, sign up here!

Education, Support and Resource Guides for Autism

These are the websites that I turn to for trusted, accurate and supportive information. I have found all of these either on my own or through word of mouth, and I wish this was the list I had been given along with my son’s diagnosis (pro tip-skip the 100 Day Toolkit).

Neuroclastic is an amazing free resource that offers insight into the autistic experience from autistic people. If you’re neurotypical or not autistic and looking to learn more about autism, what it’s like to be autistic, challenges faced by autistic people and how you can help, this site is a great place to start.

Their resource guide is robust and easy to navigate.

The Autistic Self Advocacy Network is run by autistic people, and their motto is “Nothing About Us Without Us.” This means that the autistic community needs to have a voice and be represented in discussions, decisions and laws are made about them.

This group offers insight into legislation that affects the autism community, ways to get involved to make a difference, and resources.

The National Autism Association‘s board of directors is comprised of parents of autistic people or people that are active in the promotion of advocacy. This group’s main focus is on safety, and offers training, resources for educators and caregivers, and tools for families at no cost. They are known for their Big Red Safety Box, which you’ll need to get on a mailing list to receive an alert when it’s back in stock.

The Autism Society has local chapters across the US that offer support (in-person and virtual) for caregivers and sponsor events for families with autistic members. Each local group has their own unique website (with links to local resources), and the directory is easy to navigate.

The resource section is robust and explains complicated subjects (like IEPs and financial planning) in easy-to-understand language.

Books About Autism That I Recommend (and Love)

If you know me, you know that I am a voracious reader. Belle is my Disney princess spirit animal. These are the books that were recommended to me or I found through my own research. These books offer insight into the autistic experience and how we as parents and caregivers can support our loved ones to be their best, most authentic selves.

The Reason I Jump by Naoki Higashida is somewhat of a classic and required reading for parents of autistic children. Higashida taught himself to communicate using a letter grid, and wrote this book when he was 13 using this method. This book offers insight into an autistic child’s experience that is eloquent and emotional. It opened my mind and changed my perspective about people that do not communicate by speaking out loud with their voice. It was one of the first books that I read, and I continue to go back to it. I believe this book made me a better parent and overall human being.

I Will Die On This Hill, coauthored by Meghan Ashburn and Jules Edwards, is a gold mine of information and resources. The unique perspectives of the authors (one is a non-autistic parent of autistic children, while the other is an Ojibwe autistic mother of autistic children) illustrate how important it is for neurotypical parents of autistic children and autistic adults to focus on their common goal of improving the lives and futures of autistic children instead of the differences between the two groups. I appreciated the diverse voices highlighted throughout the book, as well as the variety of resources that the reader can pursue for additional education. Check out my full book review!

While at the library on a Saturday morning, l saw this book while my son was taking every book about Egypt off the shelf. On a whim, I checked it out. I devoured A Different Kind of Normal in one day. While it’s targeted to pre-teens, this book is an insightful read for anyone. I loved the pictures throughout (the author likes cats, too!) and her honest, positive voice. This would be a good read for a child that’s trying to understand what autism is, or who is wondering if they are the only one who experiences life differently.

This might have been the first book I read after Eric received an autism diagnosis. I like this book as a starting point for parents that are new to autism and don’t know where to begin. It shifted my perspective and helped me consider what my child experiences and how I need to “un-learn” everything that I thought I knew about parenting to be the mom my son needed. Written by a mother, it is written with caring and compassion that helps you focus on your child, and what they may not be able to communicate to you. Ten Things has been updated and expanded, and I recommend it if your new to this world (and welcome!).

Dr. Barry Prizant is the author of Uniquely Human, and his simple, positive message for parents in this book is that autistic children are not broken. Dr. Prizant shares many anecdotes about his experiences in the field of autism research and therapies, many of which have stuck with me a year after reading this book. I found comfort in the message that there wasn’t anything wrong with my son, whereas the information that I was bombarded with told me that he needed to be fixed. I recommend that this is one of your first post-diagnosis reads, and offered to family members that don’t understand autism but are willing to learn.

Social Media and Public Figures That I Follow

There’s a ton of people out there that talk about autism. What’s always given me the ick is when autism is a) treated like a disease to be cured, b) there’s a lack of respect and dignity or c) when autism is treated like a brand or commercial opportunity. The people and accounts that I engage with the most are respectful, honest and educational. I also appreciate a bit of humor-we all need to laugh, right?

When You Need To Feel Like Someone Else Gets It Diary of a Mom was the first account that I felt like I could relate to. Many other accounts were of parents of younger children than mine, or who had different support and accommodation needs. Jess (the mom behind Diary) is often held as the gold standard for parents that speak about their family’s experience with autism and disabilities. She’s honest, funny and compassionate, and frankly she’s a role model. Find her on Instagram at jessdiaryofamom and Facebook Diary of a Mom.

When You Want to Know What It’s Like to Be Autistic – There are several Instagram accounts that I follow for education and insight about what life is like for autistic people. These are some of my most-viewed:

When You Want Advice From Professionals – These are people that are neurodiverse or neurodiversity-affirming that provide education and resources for professionals and parents of autistic children:

When You Need A Laugh – I am a firm believer of finding the humor in life. Follow neurominds for a dose of laughter that you can relate to.

ADHD Education, Support and Resource Guides

My son and I both have ADHD-we share some symptoms, and others are unique to each of us. I’ve found myself using the following websites repeatedly, and I recommend that you start here-whether you’re looking for ways to help a child, a loved one, yourself, or all of the above!

CHADD (Children and Adults with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder) offers a wealth of information, reasources and support for adults and children who experience ADHD. You’ll find educational content, online support groups, training classes, local chapters and more! I like that there’s a section for teachers (this is great for parents looking for some ideas to discuss for inclusion in their child’s IEP).

AACAP‘s ADHD resource center is a rich offering of information for parents that are trying to learn more about options for treatment and accommodations for their ADHD child. A couple pieces of content that I noted that were a bit unique were the medication guide, Facts for Families on specific topics/concerns, tools to find child psychiatrists near you, and a resource section.

ADDitude magazine’s website is one of my favorites for ADHD topics and practical advice. They offer information and strategies on topics that aren’t well-covered elsewhere, like health and nutrition, organizing (executive functioning) and schedules & routines.

Books About ADHD That I Recommend (and Love)

There are many characteristics of autism that cross over to ADHD, and vice versa. When researching topics to help me be the best mom to an auDHD kid that I can, I’ve started with the autism topics. The research I have found that has helped me manage my own ADHD has come from my therapist, Instagram, Pinterest and good old Google.

I stumbled upon “The Explosive Child” by Ross W. Greene while I was lying in bed after a particularly challenging day, mining the depths of Google for insight on the challenges that had transpired. This book had great reviews, so I checked it out. Ohmygosh. Why had no one told me about this book sooner????? This is a gold mine! I felt like I was talking to a (psychologist) friend while I read it-easy to understand language and concepts, and I will admit that at one point I thought “Why haven’t I figured this out myself?”. I’ve never heard about the “lagging skills” point of view, but it made so much sense. I appreciated the two example families and their experiences woven throughout the book, and the Q and A at the end of each chapter. Greene has anticipated every. single. question. anyone could ask, and he has answers. I started using “Plan B”, and it’s working! Use this book, my friends!

Social Media and Public Figures That I Follow

Here’s the thing with ADHD out in the internet and social media-it’s become trendy to create memes about ADHD, or make jokes about it. A bit of humor is beneficial for mental health-we don’t need to make everything serious all the time. Living with ADHD is not a joke, though…especially living with untreated ADHD. I appreciate the humor and the insight into what the ADHD lived experience is…but I also want strategies to deal with challenges and improve my life. You’ll find those in this section.

When You Need To Feel Like Someone Else Gets It-

When You Want Advice From Professionals

When You Need A Laugh-I am a firm believer of finding the humor in life. Follow neurominds for a dose of laughter that you can relate to.

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