yellow pages news jobs events calendar movie times
Rocklin and Roseville Today Since 2003
   |   Current Temp: 100.0 F (37.8 C)

Teen Helps Others with Autism

Rather than be interviewed over the telephone for this column, 17-year-old Meghan Rodo of Reisterstown, Maryland, chose email.

In part, here's why: "In the past, I had diagnoses of selective mutism, social anxiety, obsessive compulsive disorder, depression, auditory processing disorder, and expressive and receptive language delay, and anxiety 'not otherwise specified.' No doctor ever put this all together as autism until I was 15 years old," wrote Rodo. That diagnosis came as a relief because she finally had the answer to many lifelong questions.

A National Institutes of Health website describes autism spectrum disorder as causing "severe and pervasive impairment in thinking, feeling, language, and the ability to relate to others."

Rodo said her toughest life challenge involves having to talk with people. She feels afraid to talk, and seldom knows what to say. For example, referring to her church youth group, she said, "It can be a scary place to talk because it's loud. The people talk a lot there and they talk really fast. That makes me scared and anxious. The kids and adults encourage me to talk and ask questions. Sometimes kids ignore me, which makes me feel sad. In the past, kids used to make fun of me, saying I was dumb. That made me feel sad, too."

Rodo has made great strides through a social skills group that has helped her learn how to talk with people. She said, "In the group, I write what I want to say on paper first before I talk. There are ten kids and we take turns talking. We start with a 'check in' where we talk about what we did on the weekend and how we're doing. I feel like the social skills group has helped. I also meet with a speech therapist to work on conversations needed on the job. "

She also has improved her life skills through occupational therapy, a recreation group for teens with autism called Disability Express, a Young Life group, and a family friend who teaches her art and talks and plays games with her.

Rodo has authored a book to help girls with autism. It's called, Are You a Girl with Autism? Me Too, and is available on Amazon.com.

Advising other girls with autism, she said, "Keep trying to talk, don't worry about whatever worries you, and join social skills groups to work on answering questions."


LittleGiantFudge.com and Palmer Bus Service make this column possible.

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



Placer County News Headlines

Rocklin Unified Violated Law with Employee RetaliationA recent ruling by Administrative Law Judge Robin W. Wesley has found that the Rocklin Unified School District broke the law by retaliating against four employees and violated Educational Employment Relations Act

Severe Drought Spurs Additional Water Saving MeasuresDrought Watch: As the lingering effects of a multi-year drought continue to cast their parched shadow on much of California, Placer County continues to take steps to reduce water use and eliminate water waste.

PCWA Limits Outdoor Watering to Two Days Per WeekDrought Watch: Directors of the Placer County Water Agency on Thursday (July 31) adopted new drought emergency regulations as mandated by the State Water Resources Control Board.

California Drought Brings Emergency RegulationsDrought Watch: An emergency regulation to increase conservation practices for all Californians is now in effect.

Placer United Soccer Claims San Diego Surf CupThe Placer United 97B Red soccer team claimed the San Diego Surf Cup with a 3-1 victory over Marin FC 97 Blue in the Menís U18 Super bracket

California State Parks: Sweeping Changes On The Way?The Parks Forward Commission, an independent panel of experts charged by the Legislature and Governor to review the future of the state's park system, issued its draft plan

Autism and Fragile X Participants sought for Memory StudyThe UC Davis MIND Institute is seeking participants for a study examining the benefits of a computer-based, game-oriented training program for enhancing working memory in children and adolescents with autism and fragile X syndrome.

Concerns Addressed Over Truckee River Rafting Trash With the commercial rafting operations on the Truckee River over for the year, Placer County is working with partners to provide cleanup of the trash and debris along the river.

Roseville Financial Advisor Sentenced for Ripping Off ClientsMichelle Lee Kern, 36, who worked as a licensed financial advisor at Ameriprise Financial Services Inc. in Roseville has been sentenced to 46 months in prison.

Roseville, Rocklin among California's Best Cities for Home OwnershipIn a recent Nerd Wallet report, Rocklin, Folsom, and Roseville, rank 11th through 13th (respectively) among California's Best Cities for Homeownership.

Hidden Falls Regional Park Receives GrantPlacer County's "gem of the foothills," Hidden Falls Regional Park, is the recipient of a grant that will fund innovative projects protecting long-term ecological values and economic viability

Roseville Developer Begins Senior Community in Elk GroveUSA Properties Fund will hold a groundbreaking ceremony for Arbor Creek Senior Apartments at 10:30 a.m., Aug. 4, at the project site located at Elk Grove-Florin and Calvine roads


more news