Individual Spotlight: Able living with Autism

Adults on the autism spectrum face many challenges, from sensory overload to extreme anxiety. In the Greater Boston area, the Walnut Street Center offers a place of compassion and inclusion for autistic adults to thrive and live engaged lives through a variety of support services. Its residential homes and day services teach essential life skills, create personal connections with others, and foster confidence and community understanding.

One client that has benefited from the organization is Able, a 39-year-old non-verbal, adult with a severe cognitive disability that expresses his emotions through body language postures and modified nods. He lives with his four roommates in Arlington, interacting and interpreting the world in his most authentic way. The Center assists him with his personal care and home services, such as money management and transportation to medical support. 

According to Forbes, 1.5 million autistic adults are living in the United States with a range of low to high functioning abilities. Able’s severe disabilities do not hamper him from living his best life. He values being with family and friends, appreciates music, running, and being physically fit. He also loves to eat and try new foods. He is the biggest fan of his mother’s Spanish cuisine. 

In no words, Able shows others to live in harmony, find wonder, and appreciate the quieter things in life. He likes to walk for hours in his favorite park near his home, admiring the things around him. It does not bother him to disassemble a lamp, a light fixture, or a heater. He’s simply curious. People that are patient and understand his differences make the most impact with him like his mom and sisters. He does not care what others wear or where they live. Most important to him is to feel safe and happy.  When his environment does change with loud noises, disruptive voices, and distractions, he becomes agitated and overwhelmed.

Our state is full of diverse people. It’s essential to understand better this disorder and some of the challenging symptoms associated with autism. Adults on the autism spectrum want a greater sense of self-worth and a welcoming community that protects their long-term well-being. If you know of a family or individual that may benefit from the Walnut Street Center or are a company looking for a recognized corporate sponsorship program, contact us for more information.