Carly was two year-old when she was diagnosed with severe autism and oral motor condition which prevented her from speaking. Doctors have predicted that she would never intellectually develop beyond the abilities of six year-old kid.
Early stage of autism is very critical, so since she was three her parents put their best effort to give her the therapy she needed. Despite years of intensive behavioral and communication therapy, Carly remained non-verbal. Until one day she had a breakthrough.
Carly was eleven year-old when she first ran to a computer and began typing, “HELP THEETH HURT”.
“All of a sudden these words started to pour out of her, and it was an exciting moment because we didn’t realize she had all these words,” said speech pathologist Fenton. “It was one of those moments in my career that I’ll never forget.”
Carly started to open up, describing what it was like to have autism and why she makes odd noises or why she hits herself.
“It feels like my legs are on fire and a million ants are crawling up my arms,” Carly said through the computer. “It is hard to be autistic because no one understands me. People look at me and assume I am dumb because I can’t talk or I act differently than them. I think people get scared with things that look or seem different than them.”
Therapists say the key lesson from Carly’s story is for families to never give up and to be ever creative in helping children with autism find their voice.
Although Carly still struggles with all the symptoms of autism, which she describes with eerie accuracy and detail, she now has regular, witty, and profound conversations on the computer with her family, her therapists, and the many thousands of people who follow her via her blog, Facebook and Twitter.