October 2020: AANE Newsletter Be Yourself


October 2020: AANE Newsletter
Be Yourself
We believe everyone in the Asperger/autism community should feel they can be themselves. At AANE, we help adults, family members, and professionals find the community and support they need to share their experiences openly, ask honest questions, and develop tools to navigate the world in a way that works for them. Contact us to get connected.
Autism and the Self
“Who am I?” is a question many adults with Asperger/autism profiles have difficulty answering. Executive Director Dania Jekel discusses how this can have a detrimental impact and shares advice on how to increase self-understanding.
AANE’s Annual Report
Our 2020 Annual Report is now live on our website! Click below to see how we have met the challenges of this extraordinary year.
Register for the Fall Conference Today!
AANE’s Fall 2020 Virtual Daniel W. Rosenn Connections Conference
November 14
Don’t miss AANE’s online fall conference featuring three expert presenters speaking on living an authentic life and forming meaningful friendships. The conference will also include virtual discussion and networking groups, providing an opportunity for adults with Asperger/autism profiles, parents, and professionals to learn and connect. Find out about speaker topics, continuing education credits, and more!
📣 Opportunities to sponsor AANE’s Fall Conference are still available! Read about sponsorship levels and benefits.
Connecting to AANE During COVID-19
Check the events calendar for the most up-to-date information on AANE’s online programs, such as support groups, workshops, and social activities. If you have any questions, email events@aane.org. Click the blue links below to see more information and register.
Free Online Community Connection Sessions
With pandemic restrictions still in place, these single-session discussion groups are a great way to prevent isolation and connect online with AANE staff and others in the community. The following is a list of upcoming sessions with available spots. Click on the links and register today as sessions fill fast! (Read about AANE Support Group options further down.)
Free Google Group Forums
Join others in an online community moderated by AANE Staff.
AANE also has other resources and support for Neurodiverse Couples.
How’s it going?
Whether school is in-person, remote, or a hybrid model, now is a good time to evaluate how your child has managed these first few weeks. What is working well? What challenges have surfaced? Remember, you can request a meeting with your child’s IEP team or 504 Plan coordinator at any time if you feel the current plan is not meeting your child’s needs. If you need help, read AANE’s article on Special Education Advocacy Tips and the Tip Sheet summary, and learn about our IEP Review and Parent Coaching services.
LifeNet, AANE’s independent living support program, offers a variety of social activities for its clients. For a limited time, AANE is making some of the online LifeNet social activities available to a small number of non-LifeNet clients. All activities are FREE. Click on the button below to see upcoming dates, view descriptions, and register.
  • Mini-Series Mondays (via Netflix Party & Chrome browser)
  • TaskMaster Watch Party (via Zoom)
  • Wellness Wednesday: Evening Yoga (via Zoom)
  • Virtual Concerts (via Zoom)
  • Thursday Morning Chair Exercises (via Zoom)
We are Here for You!
Have questions or need to talk? Use the Contact Us form or schedule a free information and referral call with a member of the Adult Services or Child and Teen staff.
AANE Support Groups
Online “Closed” Support Groups
“Closed” groups have the same members for a set number of sessions and have limited space available. Click on the title of the group to register. Groups are filling quickly!
Online Support Groups for Adults
Online Support Groups for Parents of Adults
Online “Open” Groups
“Open” support groups and programs have an undefined number of group members with new people joining from session to session. Click below for information on “open” support groups for our community and to register.
AANE Program Highlights
Boo! It’s AANE HallowEEK!
AANE’s long tradition of Halloween celebrations continues! This year, any post-high school adult on the spectrum can join our FREE online social events and costume competition from anywhere in the world. Click on the event links below to register and participate!
FREE Online “Open” HallowEEK Events
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Free Autism PDPs for Early Childhood Educators!
Beginning October 15
AANE will be offering free Online Institutes for Early Childhood Educators. Participants will expand their knowledge about of the stages of development, the importance of routine screening and interventions, methods for supporting young children with autism, and much more. The deadline to apply for the upcoming Institute has been extended to October 12. Learn more and register today!
The Asperger/Autism Professional Coaching Association
If you use coaching techniques to work with older teens and adults on the spectrum, learn about AANE’s new Asperger/Autism Professional Coaching Association. In this dynamic and welcoming community, peers and experts provide advice, feedback, and guidance. Discover the benefits of becoming a member and read recent AAPCA announcements. Also, check out the new AAPCA Facebook group and LinkedIn page!
Neurodiverse Couples
AANE has several resources to better understand relationships in which one or both partners have an Asperger/autism profile. Neurodiverse couples can access AANE’s self-paced online course 101 For Couples. Couples therapists can receive specialized training to work with neurodiverse couples more effectively through AANE’s Training 101 and Certification 201. Click the links for more information!
Coming Up…
  • All AANE programming has moved online.
  • “LOCAL [City, State]” indicates groups/activities intended for those living in or near the listed area.
  • “Open” groups and programs have an undefined number of group members with new people joining from session to session.
  • “Closed” groups have the same members for a set number of sessions.
  • Text in blue are links to further information and registration.
If you like discussing science and technology, check out the AANE Meetup Group: AANE Adults for details and to RSVP for the next meeting! Read More + Register.
Grab some popcorn and watch a flick with friends! Click to learn about Netflix account and browser requirements and to register! Read More + Register.
Autism Housing Pathways President Cathy Boyle is available for individualized housing consultations to address your unique needs and questions regarding public and private housing options. Read More + Register.
Love to read? Join other post-high school adults to discuss great books. Participation is free, but registration is required to receive the link. Read More + Register.
Begins October 14
If you are a post-high school adult with Dungeons & Dragons experience, you can join AANE for an 8-session campaign no matter where you live! Read More + Register.
Whether your child/teen was recently diagnosed with an Asperger/autism profile or you need a better understanding of what the diagnosis means, AANE can help. Read More + Register.
Meet other grandparents online and find new ways to connect with your grandchildren of any age on the autism spectrum. Read More + Register.
Adults often ask what to do if they think one of their parents is on the spectrum. Join AANE staff Grace Myhill and Michele Cantara for a Q&A session for adults. Read More + Register.
Be yourself and have some fun! Register to meet online and play games like Quiplash, Fibbage, and Remote Insensitivity. Reserve your spot before the sessions fill! Read More + Register.
The pandemic restrictions have left many children and teens isolated. Jim Ross from the Arc of Massachusetts will speak and answer questions about ways parents can help their kids foster friendships through this difficult time. Read More + Register.
Fathers can share experiences, support one another, and build a toolbox for parenting children on the spectrum of any age more confidently. Read More + Register.
Join other Boston-area adults to discuss wonderful books. Participation is free, but registration is required to receive the link. Read More + Register.
For individuals with Asperger/autism profiles, isolation can be common. Join this webinar to hear one adult’s experience cultivating and maintaining meaningful connections throughout his life. Reduced price thanks to a grant from the John W. Alden Trust. Read More + Register.
Not sure how to manage your personal finances? PwC volunteers will teach you how to create a budget and give tips to help you follow it. Read More + Register.
Let’s make music! Participants will explore and grow as independent and ensemble musicians through practice and group lessons using traditional or digital instruments. Read More + Register.
PwC volunteers will demystify credit report elements, explain potential consequences of debt, and review actions to take to reduce or better manage it. Read More + Register.
AANE Team Trivia is back! Please join us for a one-time event, in which we will be joining an existing virtual trivia night. Read More + Register.
Looking for More?
Take a day-by-day look at all of the events AANE has to offer our entire community.
AANE Updates…
LifeMap: Adapting to Change
As we continue to navigate life during a historic worldwide pandemic, our LifeMAP coaches remain passionate and dedicated as they work with their clients. With their wisdom, experience, humor and empathy, our coaches help older teens and adults on their spectrum achieve a variety of personal goals, including obtaining employment, developing social skills, and transitioning to college.
Autism Research Studies
University researchers and professionals looking for study participants to further autism research often post descriptions on AANE’s website. New studies include examining racial and age disparities in autism services, examining the associative links between personality and parenting, and many more. These optional studies may include individuals with autism and/or family members. Check back frequently as new studies are added regularly.
Check This Out…

A Million Stories: A Documentary of My Life (so far)

This inspiring short documentary was created by a young man with Asperger’s whose family is part of the AANE community. We think it’s fantastic he is sharing his experiences and showcasing his talent in his job search!

Read more

In a new collection of videos, the characters of Sesame Street help children with autism adjust to COVID-19 restrictions. Read through Facebook post→
Why is there such a persistent myth that individuals with Asperger/autism profiles do not have feelings or empathy? Read about it on our website→