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  • Writer's picturePaula Migliaccio

Wondering What To Do Next for Your Older or Adult Special Needs Child?

Updated: Aug 17, 2021

Are you the parent of an older (18+) special needs child? Do you feel like there's not enough or the right kind of social skills or life skills training/support for your son or daughter? Would you like some guidance or training yourself (parent training) on how best to help your adult child learn to be more independent or socially adept?

As one parent of an adult special needs individual said to me: The bottom seems to drop out of support for our kids once they become adults--to us, this is the time to INCREASE support, not take it away. Being the mother of a newly turned adult special needs child (he just turned 18 in 2020!), I completely understand that statement. Maybe you've been offered "one size fits all" social skills training/help, or a minimum amount of time spent on life skills (or no support at all!). Maybe your adult child lives at home with you, or maybe he/she is in a residential group home, or is able to live out on his own. How do you make sure he/she is getting all the help needed? What if you could be trained better on how to help your own son or daughter?

I'm both a tutor and a behavioral therapist of special needs individuals, recently certified as a BCBA. I also recently received certification as a UCLA PEERS Young Adult Social Skills instructor, giving me the ability to help adults with special needs learn how make (and keep) friends, find a job, or start a relationship. I've worked in four different residential group homes for a year, working behaviorally with 26 special needs residents ranging in age from 18 to 72, and with almost every kind of mental disability (Autism, Down Syndrome, Schizophrenia, mood disorders, ADD/ADHD, ODD, and also deaf, mute). I've also been the push-in behavioral therapist/support for an older special needs individual living on her own with multiple community supports in place. I'm currently helping one adult special needs individual see and realize his possibilities and helping him learn to self-advocate for himself at his job. It is my passion to help empower these adults so that they can reach for the things they want most in life--the same way I continue to help my own adult special needs son. Sometimes, we as parents can help our older special needs son or daughter the most, with just a little guidance, which I can help you with through parent training.

Would you like help with your situation--even just some advice as to what direction to go in next? Talk with someone who knows what you are going through--schedule a FREE 1hr TALK with me about your son or daughter's situation. I'd love to hear your goals, concerns, and what you would like to find help with for keeping your child moving steadily forward on his/her growth path in adulthood. The bottom doesn't have to drop out for support for our adult special needs kids--contact me here ( to have a FREE 1hr Talk with someone who has both the professional and personal experience needed to guide you on what to do next!

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