Non-Verbal Autistic Teenager Given A Voice
Sixteen-year-old Fiacre Ryan’s life was transformed because of the Rapid Prompting Method, an innovative way of dealing with the effects of autism, and he now wishes to expand its use in Ireland and lower the stigma often associated with autism.
Diagnosed with autism at age three, it was difficult for friends and family to fully communicate with Fiacra. After reading the book Ido in Autismland by non-speaking autistic teenager Ido Kedar, a group of Mayo parents reached out to a provider in Wisconsin who agreed to travel to Ireland and conduct a weak-long workshop.
“I feel it necessary to share my thoughts with the world today. Just a short time ago I would have been considered dumb by many. The one thing that saved me was finding my voice with RPM. Keeping silent is not easy, but having a voice in any way is a voice to be heard. Believe!” Fiacra says.
Through the use of stencil boards and laminated letter boards, RPM supports a person with autism’s learning ability, but also allows them to effectively communicate with others.
Earlier this year, Fiacre agreed to take part in an RTÉ documentary called Autism and Me. Using his letter board, Fiacra asked people to “Try to see past the Autism and realize that we are the same inside as others.” ♦