Six Tips for Finding Support Services for Adults with Autism

You may find yourself wondering about services for people with Asperger's syndrome, especially if you have an adult child who exhibits Asperger's symptoms and who needs some extra help. What services are available to help the post 21 crowd who have aged out of all the services available for children with Asperger's syndrome? How are they going to live independently? Will they be able to get a job? Will they be able to make enough money to live on? Here are some things you might want to look into.

Asperger's Syndrome Adult Needs

First, though, a brief overview on what the most common needs of adults with Asperger's syndrome are.

  1. Social – most adults with adults with Asperger's are very isolated due to the problems they have forming peer relationships. Worries and problems seem so much more overwhelming without support from another person.
     
  2. Financial – many people with Asperger's cannot work or can't earn enough to meet their financial needs.
     
  3. Housing – some people with Asperger's need help paying for housing, and others need supported housing, where there will be staff members on call to help with their various needs.
     
  4. Household tasks – Simple, everyday household chores and tasks can be very overwhelming to people with Asperger's They worry a lot about how to do something, what order to do it in, and have problems remembering to do it. Organizational problems are common with people who have Asperger's.
     
  5. Transportation – A lot of adults with Asperger's don't drive, due to sensory concerns and cognitive processing issues. Buses are not always feasible either, due to anxiety or sensory issues, and some areas do not have bus service.
     
  6. Budgeting – Many people with Asperger's have trouble making and sticking to a budget. They need help figuring out how to pay their bills and manage their money.
     
  7. Nutrition – Some people with Asperger's need help planning and making nutritious meals. They may tend to eat chips or snack food for meals if not given some guidance on how to cook or prepare more appropriate meals. Not all people with Asperger's will have this problem, but some will.

Services Available

  1. State developmental disability programs. These can be hard to get into. Often you need to have been disabled before a certain age, and to have an IQ at a certain, usually low, level. If you do get accepted, you will get services related to all of the above; help with daily living tasks, household chores, counseling, employment services, budgeting help, transportation help, and supported housing if you need it.
     
  2. Private organizations. Some private organizations do most of what the state organizations do, but also have stringent entrance requirements. These are usually paid for by Medicaid. Many offer sheltered workshops or other employment services for adults with disabilities to work in.
     
  3. Food stamps. If your income level is below a certain amount, then you can get food stamps. These will help you buy food for the month. How much you get differs from state to state and also according to if you have any kids or other members of your family. Call the Department of Human Services in your city and state and they will be able to direct you to the appropriate.
     
  4. Section 8 Housing. If you need help paying for a place to live, you can apply for a Section 8 Housing voucher. The waiting lists for these vouchers are usually quite long, unfortunately. But once you get one, they can be a big help.
     
  5. Medicare and Medicaid. Both of these are national health insurance programs that can assist you in paying for medical needs if you are either have low-income or are disabled. This can help you pay to go to the doctor, prescriptions, and hospital stays.
     
  6. Social security benefits. Many people with Asperger's are eligible for disability benefits. This can help people with Asperger's who are not able to work lead an independent life.

Many of these services and programs can be very useful for people with Asperger's who need a little bit of help with their everyday living needs.

These are just a few of the answers you will need to successfully survive and thrive with Aspergers. To find information to help both children and adults with Asperger's syndrome see our solutions page. Also ensure you sign up for the FREE  Asperger's Syndrome Newsletter to gain additional information to help your loved one be happy and succeed in life

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8 Responses to Asperger’s Syndrome Symptoms:Finding Adult Support Services

  1. John Cannon says:

    Hi,

    My son and I are looking into possibly moving to Washington from California. While we’re focusing on the Port Angeles area I want to be able to find an area that can offer support for his Asperger’s, ADHD and psychotic hallucination (the last two are well controlled with medication). He is 23 and very high functioning. He is currently pretty self-sufficient in that he is very capable of traveling here in Redding by bus as well as walking a few miles to the books store and such. He is also attending a program which is helping him learn basic work skills and is getting rave reviews from them.

    Does the state of Washington offer support for adults with learning disabilities such as assistance in training for and searching for gainful employment? California offers these types of services and, if I must, we can remain here although I really prefer the area and style of living in the Northwest.

    I would truly appreciate any assistance you can offer that would make his life and future more meaningful.

    Thank you.

  2. Karen says:

    Our son is 28 and has Asbergers He has all the difficulties mentioned in social, friendships, and wishing to be in a relationship. He is very good with children and our friends but so whats to have a friend that calls him up to hang out. Please help me find a support group nearby our area. He finally is successful with his job driving a school bus……..

  3. Susan Gordon says:

    I work in a community college as a Career Specialist. We have a student with Asperger’s and wants to look at careers. He currently has dual Associates degrees in Music. I have given the student an online personality assessment to do at his own pace.
    My problem is placement. Are there any careers that you may suggest in which these students may do well in. He currently has a job in a grocercy store (stocker) and states that he cannot live on his current income.
    I would be thankful for any information you can provide.
    Susan Gordon
    Cedar Valley College
    One of Six Colleges in the Dallas County Community College District
    Lancaster, Texas
    972-860-8240

    • Marianne Bernaldo says:

      Hi Susan,

      Is your student planning on pursuing a bachelor’s degree? It sounds like he wants more of a career as that will yield him an income to make ends meet.

      Careers that allow an individual to work a little bit more on their own (I’m not saying they necessarily have to be isolated), generally work better for an individual with Asperger’s because of the difficulty in social situations. I would take a look at those type of careers first. Careers in retail that allow for full-time hours (e.g., stocking shelves), book keeping, accounting, engineering, are some careers that come to mind.

      Marianne

  4. Robert Krupkin says:

    My son just turned 21, not sure what program would his/our needs.

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