Adult Programs and Services
Welcome to Adult Services at the Asperger/Autism Network. The AANE Adult Services team is here to help you feel connected, understood, and empowered. At AANE, you can explore how an Asperger profile affects your life, within an understanding, respectful, and supportive community. AANE offers many opportunities for learning, self-expression, community building, and problem-solving. If you are interested in exploring any of our services or programs, please Contact Adult Services, and we will be happy to help you! AANE Adult Services works with individuals with Asperger profiles who are 18 or over and post-high school, as well as their families.
Resources and Referrals
AANE Adult Services Staff can help you locate referrals, respond to your questions or concerns, or provide support for you, your family member, friend or employee.
To avoid playing telephone and email tag, use our online scheduling system for adults or parents/family members of adults (including professionals and friends) to schedule a free information and referral session with a member of the AANE Adult Services Staff. If you have a more complex question or need more extensive support, AANE offers consultation sessions for adults with Asperger’s and related profiles. We also offer parent coaching for the parents and other family members of adults.
Help us improve our referral database
We are also in the process of creating a free public database to help people quickly find professional evaluators. In order to ensure we have an extensive a database as possible we need your help. If you know of a professional who does evaluations for Autism or Asperger related profiles, please consider taking a brief moment to fill out our survey, to help us create a great new resource for our community and its future members.
Support and Community
Adult Social and Support Groups
AANE support groups provide opportunities for participants to meet and talk with others in understanding and non-judgmental spaces. In the process of comparing life experiences and sharing challenges and successes, group members learn that they are not alone. Find the group that is right for you.
Social groups such as the AANE Pizza and Game Night provide opportunities for participants to meet in accepting spaces to socialize and to have fun. Participants build social skills in low-key, comfortable environments and often forge friendships that transcend the walls of AANE.
AANE Interest Groups
People with Asperger profiles tend to connect best around shared interests. Many individuals in our adult community are extremely creative. Others have deep knowledge of particular subjects and enjoy connecting with others around those areas of expertise. These groups enable individuals with shared interests to meet and connect with others, while simultaneously participating in their interest areas.
Recent interest groups included: music, Zentangles, filmmaking, robotics, Anime and Manga, history, technology (video games), writing, and theater.
Check out the AANE Events Calendar to see which Interest Groups are offered and when.
AANE Artist Collaborative
The AANE Artist Collaborative endeavors to support artists in the AANE community by enabling them to showcase and sell their work throughout the year. The artists meet monthly to share artistic, technical, and business knowledge in a supportive group, appreciative of their unique styles and perspectives.
Support for Parents, Family Members, and Friends of Adults with Asperger's/Autism
Sometimes you just need to:
- Brainstorm with other parents and family members in similar situations
- Learn how other families have successfully solved problems
- Find out how other families have coped when they haven't been successful
- Vent just a little bit -- or celebrate big and small achievements.
- Learn about services and programs that could help your adult child or family member
- Take some time-- to take care of you
To meet these needs, AANE offers a number of support group options for parents and other family members and friends of adults with Asperger’s or a related profile. These include:
- AANE Parent of Adult (POA) support groups are designed for parents and other family members or friends of an adult with Asperger's or a related profile. These are small, caring communities in which the same parents, family members, and friends meet over the course of six months. Not only do other members in the group help solve some of your problems, some of them may become lasting connections in your support network. AANE offers six in-person parent of adult support groups in Massachusetts and New Hampshire. For parents and family members in other parts of the US, we also have one online video-conferencing group that offers a similar POA support group experience.
- AANE also sponsors a face-to-face support group for parents of adults in Rhode Island. This is an open group and all parents of adults with autism spectrum and related diagnoses are welcome.
- The AANE Online Discussion Forum for Parents of Adults is a place to go to ask questions of and share information with other parents and family members of adults with Aspergers/Autism. While many of of the discussion group’s members reside in New England, there are quite a few who come from other parts of the US and a few are from other countries. This group offers remote access to a broad and ever-changing community of people asking questions, offering insight, and sharing stories about young adults as well as older adults with autism.
Click here to learn more about these support group options.
Partner/Couple Support and Discussion Groups
In Person: These unique groups provide opportunities to for those in a relationship in which one or both individuals have an Asperger profile to give and receive support. In spaces comprised of community members and professionals, these groups provide connection, understanding and opportunities to learn and grow. We offer face-to-face groups for those in the area in addition to online groups available to people all over the world.
Online: There are two online discussion groups offered for spouses and partners: one for partners currently in a relationship with a person with an Asperger profile, and one group for those who are divorced and co-parenting. In either group, you have the opportunity to connect remotely with others who will hear your stories and relate from their own experiences. You can even start by just reading what others have to say. These groups are moderated by Grace Myhill, AANE Director of Partner Services.
Information and Education
Sometimes you need time to sit down and have a conversation to learn more about Asperger Profiles or discuss some strategies for an issue. Schedule a consultation in-person, on the phone, or via skype. Consultations usually take about an hour and the cost is $125 (financial assistance available). You choose your consultation topic based on your needs and priorities. This may include: review of Asperger profiles, planning for the future, disclosure, communication, relationships, and more.
Use our online scheduling system to set up a consultation session with a member of the Adult Services staff.
Sign up for individualized problem solving and skill-building for parents of adults to address your adult child and family's unique needs at home, school, work, or out in the community. Your parent coach will provide organization and planning to help you create a family roadmap and prioritize where you need to invest your time, money, and energy. You will receive targeted and tailored information concerning benefits and supports. If you participate in coaching with a co-parent, your coach will offer practical strategies to help you "parent on the same page."
AANE Life Management Assistance Program (LifeMAP)
AANE’s Life Management Assistance Program is an intensive, practical, highly individualized life coaching program for individuals with Asperger profiles. LifeMAP is staffed by trained professionals with expertise in Asperger profiles. Coaches help clients use their strengths to identify and overcome the particular barriers they face. The ultimate goal of LifeMAP is for clients to improve their quality of life, increase their independence, and progress toward reaching their full potential.
Neurodiverse Couples Coaching
Intimate relationships can be hard, but they are especially challenging when partners have different perspectives, communication techniques, approaches, and skill sets. In Neurodiverse Couples Coaching sessions, which can occur individually or together with your spouse/partner, you will discuss issues related to your unique relationship in which one or both members have an Asperger profile.
Educational Workshops and Conferences
View the Events Calendar for these and other upcoming events.
The Jody Acford Spirit Conference – Annually each summer
Navigating Public and Private Supports in Massachusetts – Annually in January/February
Daniel W. Rosenn Annual AANE Connections Conference – Annually in autumn
Training for Professionals
AANE provides customized training and consultation to meet the needs of professionals. Many professionals find it helpful to start with a training session and then schedule follow up consultations to problem solve and support the implementation of new strategies. Professionals can request trainings from AANE staff, and if you are an adult or family member, please encourage any member of your professional team to reach out to us to continue to improve their effectiveness in supporting you.
AANE Adult Speakers Bureau
No one understands the Asperger experience better than those with Asperger profiles. In recognition of the unique perspectives of these individuals, AANE has assembled a Speakers’ Bureau of adults of all ages. All of these adults have experience in public speaking. Their presentations will enhance your understanding of the challenges people with Asperger profiles face, and the strategies that help them succeed through irreplaceable first-person perspectives.
AANE Forms Clinic
Do you need help completing applications for a variety of programs and services like, SSI, SSDI, DMH, DDS, SNAP, vocational services, or health insurance? AANE's Nancy Roney can help you understand and complete these applications. You can sign up online and pay the $5.00 fee. This service is available to all adults with Asperger profiles, by appointment. Your first appointment takes place by phone. If additional time is needed by phone or in person, you will schedule that at the end of your first phone call. Forms clinic is available on the 15th of each month (except on holidays). You can see available times and sign up online below.
Nancy Roney is a retired legal professional with a Paralegal Certificate from Bentley University. Her expertise includes drafting, filing, litigation management, documentation, and regulatory compliance. Before retirement she worked at Iron Mountain and K&L Gates, LLP. She is a parent of an adult on the autism spectrum and a long-time member of the AANE community.