Teen with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome Becomes Advocate
After my infant and toddler years in Mt. Orab, Ohio, I grew up reading the Georgetown (Oh.) News Democrat. This week, I feature a person from Mt. Orab that reads this column in the News Democrat. Life can be one big circle, can't it?
In a telephone interview, Kelly McKinney said, "I had our home qualified both as a foster and adoptive home before picking Kiah up from the hospital when she was a day old. I knew I wanted to adopt a baby and it took a year for us to get her adopted."
Everything went well until Kelly began noticing Kiah falling behind on all her developmental milestones, including crawling, walking, and talking. Doctors figured it out when Kiah was nine. "When I first heard the diagnosis (of fetal alcohol syndrome, or FAS), I was pretty devastated," said Kelly. "Learning the diagnosis did give us a reason why (she had fallen behind in her milestones). But the diagnosis was so permanent."
Kelly homeschooled her adopted daughter because "Kiah wouldn't have been able to function" in public school and likely would have been bullied or teased. Now age 14, Kiah can do only second-grade math. She reads very well, but her comprehension rate due to FAS remains at second-grade level, too.
Kelly said, "Kiah is very trusting. It would be easy for a stranger take her money or come into her home. Kiah wouldn't think twice about it. She thinks everyone is her friend. She has no concept of money right now. And as for her being a young woman, I have other concerns for her."
Kelly said Kiah will always need an "external" brain, someone to pay her bills, and she probably won't be able to drive or hold a full-time job.
With mom's endorsement, Kiah has become an advocate for her own cause. Kelly then put Kiah on the telephone with me, and Kiah said, "I just want to get the word out to women not to drink alcohol when pregnant. I've gotten the word out here at the library and Kroger's (a grocery store). I talk to people in the aisles. I say I have FAS and they ask me what that is. I say that's when a pregnant woman drinks alcohol and it (permanently) affects the baby's brain. I say my birth mother drank alcohol while she was pregnant with me."
Sponsored by Blue Valley Sod.
Daniel J. Vance is a licensed professional counselor and national certified counselor from Vernon Center, Minn. His weekly newspaper column Disabilities has been published in more than 260 newspapers.
Daniel J. Vance may be reached at www.danieljvance.com
Pet Care | Real Estate | Restaurants | Tech | View All | * Add/Upgrade Business
Placer County News HeadlinesRoseville Reservoir in Placer County Future?Roseville's City Council and Placer County Water Agency's (PCWA) Board of Directors last week opted into the initial phase of the Sites Reservoir project
New California Laws 2017 (Part 16)Roseville, CA - New California laws for 2017. Part 16 includes federal immigration policy enforcement, veterans, disability benefits, private investigators, elections, special education, and much more.
Roseville Gas Prices Reverse Upward TrendRoseville, CA- Gas prices in Roseville and around many parts of the country reversed course with a slight downtick this past week.
Placer County Hoteliers: Taxman Cometh Airbnb, Vacation Rentals By Owner, inns or hotels. If you provide lodging in Placer County, you're required to collect Transient Occupancy Tax
Lake Tahoe Bound? Be prepared and patientTAHOE CITY, Calif. -- As Northern California prepares for the second and third storms of a week-long string of weather systems, Placer County is reminding residents and visitors
New California Laws 2017 (Part 15)Roseville, CA - New California laws for 2017. Part 15 includes criminal gangs, property taxes, real estate licenses, terrorist activity, child abuse, voting: felons, human trafficking
Study: Lung Cancer Patients Not Receiving TreatmentA national study by researchers at UC Davis Comprehensive Cancer Center has found that a significant number of lung cancer patients are not receiving treatment.
$21 Million for Regional Small BusinessesThe Capital Region Small Business Development Center (SBDC) has surpassed significant milestones in helping regional businesses
Rocklin Preschoolers Donate to Children in NeedROCKLIN, CA, - Students at Merryhill Preschool in Rocklin collected 69 pairs of pajamas to benefit local children in need for the holidays.
Bust Water Use Myths in Water Spots Video ContestLocal area middle and high school students can win cash prizes and the opportunity to view their video on the Raley Field Jumbotron
Placer SPCA seeks 2017 Hero Awards NominationsRoseville, CA - Placer SPCA is seeking nominations for the 2017 Hero Awards, to be presented at the 16th annual Funny Bones Comedy & Awards Night
Beatles vs. Stones Tribute at Harlows this MarchThe debate between the Beatles and the Rolling Stones has been going on ever since they first crossed paths on the charts 53 years ago
NEWS: In Case You Missed It