Face-to-Face Support Groups for Parents of Adults
AANE parent of adult support groups are designed for parents who want to build an ongoing connection with a small community of parents. Each group meets face-to-face once per month, usually from 6:30-8:00 PM on a designated day (.e.g. Third Thursday of the month). Each group meets 6 times over the course of 6 months. Group members need to register in advance and membership is limited to 12 individuals. Each group is facilitated by an AANE staff member. Participants must be parents or adult family members of a post-high school adult 19 years or older with Asperger’s or a related profile.
Common topics of discussion are:
- Now that your child is an adult, how do you parent without power?
- How do you keep the lines of communication open?
- How can you help your child find and sustain employment or live independently?
- How to get your adult child expand his or her social network?
- What local providers, programs, and services have other parents used and what were the results?
- How have other parents tapped into health, income, housing and other benefits?
Parents also rely on these support groups to:
- Give voice to their concerns and frustrations
- Acknowledge both hard-won and unexpected victories.
Registration is $90 for the first participant and $45 for additional members of the same family. These support groups are not subsidized by a grant and are self-funding. Financial waivers or discounts are limited. Contact Michele Cantara (email@example.com) for more information.
October 2017 through March 2018 Parent of Adult Support Groups at AANE
We are currently accepting registrations for the following groups. All registrations must be completed by Sep 30, 2017
|Age of Adult with ASP||Location||Day||Facilitator||Registration Link|
|19-26 years old||Watertown||3rd Weds||Michele Cantara||Registration|
|27 years or older||Watertown||1st Thurs||Michele Cantara||Registration|
|22-32 years old||Peabody||2nd Thurs||Gail Kastorf||Registration|
|19-26 years old||Westwood||1st Tues||Lynne Mitchell||Registration|
|19-26 years old||Westwood||3rd Tues||Lynne Mitchell||Registration|
|19 years or older||Bedford, NH||3rd Tues||Jennifer DeSanctis-Narby||Registration|
|22-32 years old||Chelmsford, MA||1st Tues||Michele Cantara||Registration|
Parent of Adult Support Group Facilitators
Michele Cantara, Director of Family Support Adult Services, AANE
Michele is the mother of a young adult with ASD who is taking college classes and working at two part-time jobs. In college, Michele majored in Psycholinguistics, which helped her recognize her son's social interaction issues early on, and started her down a path of advocating for parents. In 1998 she co-founded the Massachusetts Special Education Parents Advisory Council (MASSPAC). Michele also spent 35 years in the high-tech industry, and she now applies her well-honed consulting and change management skills to parent coaching sessions and support groups at AANE. Michele facilitates groups in Watertown and Chelmsford.
Jennifer DeSanctis-Narby, AANE LifeMap Coach and Group Facilitator
Jennifer, a native New Yorker, moved to New Hampshire several years ago and loves it. She started at AANE as LifeMAP coach in 2014 and has facilitated our Bedford NH parent of adult support group since 2015. Coaching LifeMap clients and leading parent groups is her passion. She says, "it's a pleasure spreading the word of AANE's fine work throughout NH, and I'm proud to be part of such a great team. My LifeMap clients and the parents I work with teach me so much! They are eager to learn, are open to trying new things, and light up when goals big and small are met." Jennifer believes her work at AANE is by far the most rewarding job she has ever held. She is constantly amazed by parents' commitment to their child's future, but she also recognizes that this commitment can be all-consuming and draining. She has a motto, "What else can go right?" She believes this "attitude adjustment" can yield great results -- once you begin to focus on what is going right in your life, significant positive changes can occur.
Gail Kastorf currently serves as the AANE Grant Writer and facilitates groups for adults with AS and their parents on the MA North Shore. During her 11 years at AANE, she has also assisted adults to understand how Asperger's Syndrome may impact their work life and discussed strategies to increase success on the job. She has provided training on AS to educators, career counselors, vocational rehabilitation counselors and employers. She has a M.Ed. in Counseling from Northeastern University. Gail facilitates a support group in Peabody.
Lynne Mitchell facilitates support groups in Westwood, MA
AANE-Sponsored Support Group for Parents of Adults in Other Parts of New England
AANE Online Discussion Group for Parents of Adults
We have listened to your requests for an online group specifically for parents of adults (including young adults through all other phases of adult life). We invite members of AANE to join this discussion group for parents of adults in all phases of life. If you ever feel like you need to find other parents who "get" what your life has been like raising a child (or children) with Asperger profiles, this group is for you. This parent group is a forum where you can share your concerns, questions, and successes with other parents. If you are looking for an understanding community of parents who are also "walking in your shoes" and who can offer support, empathy, and information to ease your stresses and celebrate your successes, please join today. This group is moderated by AANE staff to ensure the building of a strong support community for all parents; you are not alone on this journey.
Who: For parents of adults with Asperger or related profiles
Moderator: Michele Cantara
To Join: Please complete the form below. Then look for your email invitation, and follow the instructions to set-up your account.