#144: Parenting a Child with Autism (Part 1)

Our Honest Journey of Overcoming as a Family

This is one of our most honest and vulnerable episodes, as we share the journey of parenting a child with autism. This episode is Part one of a two part series.

Today the autism spectrum disorder affects nearly 1 in 68 children in the United States, which has risen 30% from only two years ago, where it was 1 in 88. 1 in every 42 boys are found to be on the spectrum. To say autism spectrum disorders are rising rapidly is an understatement. This is becoming a pandemic issue.

Autism is a developmental disorder, especially affecting the neurological development of a child. It impairs social interaction, verbal and non-verbal communication and can manifest repetitive behaviors. Signs can be detected before the age of two.

Autism is a spectrum disorder, meaning it manifests with varying intensities in each kid. It’s not something that looks the same for every kid. We often say, “If you’ve seen one autistic child….you have seen ONE autistic child.” The manifestation does not look exactly the same from case to case.

The subject of autism hit our home in the life of our first born son Maximus. It has been a subject that has rocked our house and affected every area of our life. When you have a family and within that someone has special needs, everything is impacted in significant ways. Even years later, where Max is now 9 years old, we are still coming to terms with what life is going to be like and how we can best minister to his heart, as well as keep our own spiritual health and groundedness.

We will be honest and transparent, because many families are experiencing the impact of children who have special needs, are on the autism spectrum or are simply going through uncharted challenges in raising their children. We all need more real discussions, hope and encouragement. Whether you know someone who is impacted by this subject or not, I believe we need to have some better understanding so that we can process this journey with greater fruitfulness.

Video Broadcast:

In part one, we openly share about the following areas:

  • Our story of learning that our son Max was on the autism spectrum.
  • What parents have to face when it comes to living with autism.
  • How did we process this issue and what are we currently doing today?
  • What God did through our marriage in the midst of this trial.
  • What has been our spiritual approach as a family.

As a disclaimer: we are not doctors nor are seeking to give any medical instructions. We are simply parents who help families and individuals learn to live as overcomers. You don’t have to agree with where we are coming from. We just want to share our story and invite you to grow with us in the process.

We pray our vulnerability will minister to your heart and journey.

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Mark DeJesus has been equipping people in a full time capacity since 1995, serving in various roles, including, teaching people of all ages, communicating through music, authoring books, leading and mentoring. Mark's deepest love is his family; his wife Melissa, son Maximus and daughter Abigail. Mark is a teacher, author and mentor who uses many communication mediums, including the written word, a weekly radio podcast show and videos. His deepest call involves equipping people to live as overcomers. Through understanding inside out transformation, Mark's message involves getting to the root of issues that contribute to the breakdown of our relationships, our health and our day to day peace. He is passionately reaching his world with a transforming message of love, healing and freedom. Out of their own personal renewal, Mark and Melissa founded Turning Hearts Ministries, a ministry dedicated to inside out transformation. Mark also founded Transformed You, a communication platform for Mark’s teachings, writing and broadcasts that are designed to encourage people in their journey of transformation. Mark and Melissa currently live in Connecticut.

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  • Webbgurl2000

    God Bless you BOTH. I’ve got at least 2 on the Spectrum, and God has been a Stallworth in the Storm as I have come to accept & love in addition to grieve while raising children with Aspergers.
    Thank You from the Bottom of My Heart ❤️

    • God bless YOU as well! May God continue to add grace, love and insight to every step of the journey for you. Thank you for your kind words.