The social network for parents of kids with autism

Part 1

Maximize MyAutismTeam, by sharing a little bit about yourself. This two-part series is to help you get to know more great parents on MyAutismTeam. When making valuable connections and friendships, it’s always valuable to start with oneself.

Begin With You

Getting started: Consider the value of customizing your own profile on MyAutismTeam. Whenever we hear something kind or insightful from someone, we have a natural tendency to want to know the person who said it. At a glance, a photo of yourself adds more personality, and builds trust in the community since your profile photo can be a large part of your identity on the site.  

Avatar designed by: http://dribbble.com/designovich

Your story: Add your story to your profile. Have you ever read someone else’s account of what happened to them, and said “that’s happened to me before?”  And by reading the story, you realized that it made you feel better, not because it solved your problem, but because you found someone you could relate to.  Add or update your story.

Team: To the extent that you have a team (dentists, autism-friendly businesses, developmental pediatrician, therapists for your child, equine therapy center) add them. Your team is a great way of helping other parents near you learn more about resources you find valuable, and possibly have in common with each other. Add to your team.

Explore: A good first step to take when exploring MyAutismTeam is to browse around, or “lurk”. There’s nothing wrong in getting the “lay of the land”.  Figuring out who’s active and how they are active is a great way to get to get a feel for the community.  However, at some point, once you’ve figured it out, you should participate. Participating means commenting, and sharing.  Why is this important? It creates an awareness of you, contributes to the overall tone of the site, and builds up trust with other parents.  No one is here to judge. If anything, this is a place where parents understand, vent, and share the small daily victories. It can be encouraging and uplifting to be a part of it. Post an update or photo.

In part 2 of this series, we’ll share some simple, but effective tips to making the kinds connections to parents you want. Meanwhile, complete your own profile following the tips above. You’ll be surprised how effective sharing a little bit about yourself can go with building trust among other parents in the MyAutismTeam community.


Comments on: "How to Find Great Parents to Connect With on MyAutismTeam" (30)

  1. thanks for taking the time to put this together. I believe it would be helpful to new members.
    thanks for your efforts!
    Scott

  2. More reserved parents might find it helpful to begin by posting on the Q&A board to begin with. It gets someone else to start the dialogue and might help you find other parents to add to your Team.

  3. I’ve noticed there are posts and outcries for local activities for families with children on the spectrum. Would it be possible to create an additional activity tab as an option to search for local events? Something that would enable one to search for group/family activities in your particular region/area. Lately, in my region, there have been organizations that are hosting functions and the attendance is low or, to me, dissappointing. Perhaps if there was a way to post these events via this site word would spread faster or people would get more involved to volunteer for these events. Sometimes people aren’t aware of what is out there and this could help.

  4. When I first accessed this site, my daughter was recently diagnosed with Autism and I was very new to all the therapies and acronyms and nervous to post. Would it be possible to have a local or regional peer support leader to reach out to new members? In that way, the peer support leader could assist the new member with getting local assistance and/or referrals and ease the new member into the transition of the site.

    • ericpeacock said:

      Thanks for the great idea Pamela! This is something we’re working on. Across the country we’ve noticed different folks naturally taking on this role which has been inspiring to see. Total strangers (with a very big common bond) reaching out to new parents on the site. I’d encourage everyone to do that. It’s what makes MyAutismTeam so special.

    • I think this would be a great idea. So many parents need support and are lost in where to go for help. I started one on fb called puzzle corner if any of you are interested.
      Don’t hesitate to message me.. We’re all here to help one another.

  5. Wendy Bateman said:

    I had difficulty finding other parents with older teens with autism. Also, I was looking for other families in Ontario, Canada, The Canadian families is slowly increasing. I had trouble when I was initiating my team, I wanted to delete someone, but could not do? Thanks you allowing me to provide input,

    • ericpeacock said:

      Thanks for the feedback Wendy. We’d love any advice and help you can give us to help spread the word about MyAutismTeam in Canada! If you belong to any list serves, support groups or other organizations please let them now MyAutismTeam is there for Canada! One thing you can do is search for parents with teens but don’t specify the province or state. In other words – connect with parents all over North America who have teens with autism. There are hundreds on the site. It’s amazing the bonds people are building even when thousands of miles apart. If you want to remove someone from your team you should be able to click on the business or provider – go to their provider listing page and then click “remove from team”. Please ping me eric@myautismteam.com if that doesn’t work for you. Thanks!
      eric

  6. Cindy Owens said:

    My internet has been off so just getting a good chance to look around but what I have seen seems to be wonderful. I think anyone could benefit from this sight.

  7. Jenny (EthanMom) said:

    First at all, thank you so much for this website. Recently you made MyAutismTeam available for mobile, which is great however it has very limit functions. It’ll be nice if this app functionality can be expanded. For example I can see someone add a comment on a question I answered but I can’t access the feedback. Sometime I can get access to a comment someone made on my profile, but not when the comment was made on an answer I gave on someone else original comment. All the improvement you have been doing to the website is really great… I’d just like a little more functionality on the app…

  8. Renee Maddox said:

    I’m very thankful for this site. Support is very important for the parents as well as our children. The one thing I like most about the site is you can communicate with parents all over the United States. Sometimes you just don’t have the mental or physical strength to go to a support meeting, the Autism Team allows me to connect from the comfort of my home. The parents on this site are awesome:)

  9. I think the personal profiles are great, but having a short fill-in list that can match or suggest potential team-members with similar answers can be helpful to people who may feel alone or not know how to connect or reach out. I would really love to see some sort of notification system of new members in my local area, etc..

    The Q&A is a great way for people to connect too. I found it really easy to use.

    Overall, I’d just like to say that I can say things on MyAutismTeam I wold never say on my standard social networking site. This is more real, it’s something where I can be myself, talk about my kids without having to hear the shocks and scoldings of friends, family, and acquaintances who don’t understand (whether or not they intend to), and I feel that realness from the moment I fill out the profile and start to see people respond in a positive, understanding, non-judgemental way.

  10. teresa emmot said:

    this has been a huge help to me. :) very happy with this site :) thank you so much… :)

  11. I think this is very helpful and easy to follow. Thanks for all your hard work! I have recommended this site to several parent friends on the same path as my family!

  12. What can we do to help people just begin a dicussion. Sometimes its not about getting an answer to a question as encouranging parents to start a discussion. Sometimes starting that discussion can answer questions parents didn’t even know they had. What if the website posed a weekly question to have parents respond to and share there experiences in. questions that are really geared at trying to solve a specific problem or get one right answer but just to raise a free flowing discussion.

  13. alicia howell said:

    What about possibly adding a live chat on the site?

  14. Danielle said:

    I think this is great. I am new to this site and just starting to get my feet ‘wet’ so to speak. I look forward to all the tips and tricks and helping thoughts and just insight from parents who share similar daily struggles. I don’t feel like I am the only one dealing with this.

  15. Hi team! This is my first blog. I am looking for advice on good school districts or private programs or schools for autism in the DFW area. My son Luke is 7 any was diagnosed @2. He had had multiple years of ABA therapy, but do longer receives this service. He currently attends public school with an ABLE program designed specifically for autistic children. The teacher he had last year made great strides with him, this year however he does not seem to be improving. He needs to be somewhere that pushes him. Do you know of a good program? Thanks

  16. I would like to a place to just post helpful informations to other parents such as, Dental, switching therapist, Dr.’s, case managers ect. or just to post helpful idea’s like creating texture boards, food diaries, schedule boards ect. Maybe and suggestion/ idea page? I post them on my pin board or write them on my page for now =0)

  17. Georgina Mata said:

    Thank you for designing this website. Its wonderful tool. A support group for parents. Would like to see more information about local activities.

  18. Amazing site, I just wish the search for local people on the full site was also on the mobile app. I use the app 99% of the time, don’t get time to sit in front of my desktop computer anymore…

  19. Grammy-TeamElijah said:

    KristenJ: As per your request, thanks for the invite to review this page. It really looks fine to me, but I do have a few suggestions in general about the site that I hope will be helpful to you. The first 2 are actually a repeat of the comment I left you earlier in the day on my post. I didn’t realize at the time that there would be a comment box on this page. So, if you read them there, you can skip to #3.

    #1–It would be nice if an ‘additional comments’ box could be added to the ‘My Kids’ form page that parents complete about their autistic children upon joining the site. These kids are so much more than their diagnosis, the therapy they receive, the medication they take, etc., and parents should have a way of sharing that on their ‘My Kids’ profile.

    #2–Inboxes or a way to share with other team members ‘privately’ would be a nice addition too. Sometimes, a team member might want to share a little more detail and one-on-one with a team member in a similar circumstance, but might not feel comfortable doing it in a forum in which everyone, including people outside their team, can see it. Perhaps, there is an option here to do that already and I just haven’t found it.

    #3–Adding an ‘editing’ feature to post and comment boxes would be helpful. Try as we might, we don’t always catch all the spelling errors when we post something and it would be nice to have the option to correct mistakes without deleting and doing a cut-n-paste in a new box. Sometimes, this is mistaken for ‘spam’ and we’re prevented from doing it. But, I do understand that there is no way for the site to know that someone is just trying to make corrections.

  20. I love the whole website. So glad I stumbled upon it!

  21. Jackie Sherrrill said:

    I would like to see where you can see other people in your area having the same diagnosis. Also a way to Private Message a person only, not the whole group. Lastly, I would LOVE to see the services shown for each state. Not each state is mandated to have services for autism and possibly a weblink to click onto to get to your state information. How about having a montly (specialist) speaker to answer some questions from the followers. I am sure a lot of people might have the same question, but need direct advise from a person who knows the answer, personally, legally, in the industry, book writter and anyone who could be helpful to us. Thank you.

  22. This a great site and it has helped me tremendously. The steps to identify yourself are plain and easy. Personally, for me, as added my story to the site and it was not til I re-read my own story that I realized how much strength and determination I had in myself when finding answers about my son’s Autism diagnosis. The ability to read other’s stories and seeing that I’m not alone… gave me ease. I love that this site allows us to share stories, ask questions, get personal experience advice, give “hugs” to each other and just simply listen is awesome! I feel connected to other mothers, fathers, and grand parents of whom I’ve never met… Now that’s community!!!!!

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