Now Available in ebook Form!

Parenting Advice from 12 Autistics is an advice book for parents and caregivers of Autistic children with ideas generated from Autistic adults themselves who have reflected on their experiences growing up. It is based on twelve interviews I conducted with speaking Autistic individuals, and includes personal stories and advice from the contributors. The contributors have varied backgrounds and professions. They include writers, journalists, students, an IT professional, a stay-at-home mom, a hotel services employee, a relationship coach, a data architect and analyst, and a Pulitzer-Prize winning music critic.

Some of the topics discussed in this book include:

  • Studying desirable behaviors
  • Redefining communication breakdowns
  • Discovering and supporting your child’s agenda
  • Sensory Processing Disorder
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
  • Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA)
  • The neurodiversity movement
  • Encouraging self-advocacy and autism acceptance
  • The problem with hiding autism
  • Pursuing meaningful friendships (for you and your child)
  • Educational advocacy
  • Autistic success in the workplace

This book is different from other autism parenting guides in that the advice mentioned has been generated solely from the Autistic individuals themselves, and not from other neurotypical parents, medical professionals, or psychologists. It also attempts to teach neurotypical parents different ways of thinking about their autistic children, with instructions provided by the Autistic contributors. This includes information about disability rights and examining the impact of how parents speak and act towards their Autistic children. This information is especially important to parents and caregivers of Autistic children who may not realize how their vigorous attempts to do what is “best” for their children (pursuing every sort of therapy imaginable, and trying to cure or hide their children’s autism) can lead to crippling perceptions of self worth. It is based on the personal experiences of the contributors, divulging what has helped or hurt them as they navigated childhood and adulthood as autistic individuals.

What Your Child on the Spectrum Really Needs: Advice From 12 Autistic Adults is now available in print and ebook form:


E-book (100% of the proceeds go to Autistic content creators-read about how to support this site)

Testimonials / Reviews

“It’s easy to forget that adults could not receive an autism diagnosis until the 1990s, and that as a result, autistic children and their parents couldn’t benefit from the lived experiences of people on the spectrum.

Jenna Gensic’s book marks a profound historical shift — the beginning of an era when parents can turn to autistic adults, instead of only to neurotypical ‘experts,’ for advice on helping their kids navigate and learn to thrive in a world that is often confusing and overwhelming. Gensic has gathered a group of wise autistic elders to offer helpful and practical guidance on a broad array of subjects and challenges. An uplifting and encouraging book.”

 — Steve Silberman, author, NeuroTribes: The Legacy of Autism and the Future of Neurodiversity

“Wise advice from twelve older autistic people will help teenagers and young adults on the spectrum navigate life. Jenna Gensic’s book will also provide parents and professionals with great insights.”

–Temple Grandin, author of Thinking in Pictures, The Autistic Brain

“Jenna goes directly to the source – autistic people themselves – to gain greater understanding in what children on the spectrum need. Carefully crafted interviewing gifts the reader with vital insights in promoting fulfilling and productive lives for autistic children by working with their strengths, while remaining realistic about the often significant challenges, that come from being autistic.”

 –Stephen M. Shore, Ed.D, Internationally known educator, author, consultant, and presenter on issues related to autism

In her book,What Your Child on the Spectrum Really Needs: Advice From 12 Autistic Adults, Jenna Gensic insightfully explores various angles of autism through interviews and reflection. I thoroughly enjoyed the perspective deep within our spectrum community–those with autism themselves. It is well-written, and very informative.” 

— Carrie Cariello, author, What Color is Monday?, Someone I’m With Has Autism

This book is very important! One of the questions that I am asked most frequently by parents is, ‘How do I parent my child with autism so that he can excel?’ What Your Child Really Needs: Advice From 12 Autistic Adults provides the best insight into answering this question. Autistic adults share valuable information, stories, and tips that brilliantly illustrate how to help children   experience life’s triumphs and overcome obstacles that may be placed in their way. Parents, please read this book!!”

— Brenda Smith Myles, PhD, author, Excelling with Autism: Obtaining Critical Mass Using Deliberate Practice, The Hidden Curriculum: Practical Solutions for Understanding Unstated Rules in Social Situations 

“There is a revolution underway that is deconstructing damaging myths, and reconstructing more positive and accurate understandings about the autistic experience. Indisputably, the leaders of this revolution are autistic people who have generously shared their first hand experiences. In this essential work, Jenna Gensic, a parent-professional and originator of the website, draws from the experience and expertise of 12 autistic adults to take it a step further by offering direct advice for parents and family members. Jenna is to be congratulated for supporting more autistic voices in helping us better understand, support and appreciate the uniqueness autistic children and adults.”

–Barry M. Prizant, Ph.D., CCC-SLP, Adjunct Professor, Brown University, author, Uniquely Human: A Different Way of Seeing Autism and The SCERTS Model 

“Jenna Gensic has written a book that is a must-read for future and current speech-language pathologists, parents of Autistics, and anyone else who wants an inside look at autism. Read this book and learn from the experts themselves-Autistics. She writes from an angle that does not alienate professionals, yet empowers parents and Autistics themselves. As a professor and speech-language pathologist of over 20 years, I highly recommend this book!” Jennifer M. Hatfield MHS CCC-SLP/L, Clinical Assistant Professor, Indiana University South Bend