Mental health and wellness is important for all people. To support mental health and wellness for people with an autism diagnosis, it is important to understand their particular style of thinking and the way their brain handles information along with the impact of both environmental and other types of trauma. Additionally, when it comes to mental health and well-being, there are specific stressors unique to autistic individuals. This three part series will take a look at these topics, giving you a foundation of shared knowledge important for all – individual with ASD, parent, teacher, support worker, therapist or anyone interested in this topic.
(Note: Identity-first language used intentionally as it is the preference of most autistics.)
Part One: Foundations of Autistic Neurology
Presented by Judy Endow
To support autistic mental health and wellness, it is important to understand the particular style of thinking and the way the autistic brain handles information. As a mental health provider and an autistic herself, Judy understands intimately the pitfalls when people try to support the mental health and wellness of an autistic based on who they ARE NOT – their “deficits” when measured with the neuromajority yardstick of “normal.” If you are autistic or an ally please know there is a better way! In this presentation Judy starts with who autistic people ARE and how they comfortably function, going over key elements of taking in, processing, storing and retrieving information along with autistic thinking style. Numerous examples are included so autistic individuals and their allies will come to understand that supporting mental health and wellness can only happen when autistics are honored for who they ARE and who they want to be in this world.
Part Two: Stressors, Trauma & Autism
Presented by Sharon Hammer & Lisa Hoeme
To support autistic mental health and wellness, it is important to understand the specific stressors that individuals on the autism spectrum often experience. The cumulative impact of these stressors over the course of a day, and a lifetime, can have a traumatic impact and lead to activation of survival responses. In this presentation, Sharon and Lisa look at the effects of trauma on the brain, and how the biology of the autistic brain can result in it being particularly sensitive to stressors and trauma. As neuromajority mental health therapists, Sharon and Lisa draw upon their years of experience supporting clients on the autism spectrum. Throughout their presentation, Lisa and Sharon will share numerous quotes and examples from autistic people, highlighting what autistic people have taught them about their experience with stress and trauma.
Part Three: Autistic Neurology & Supporting Mental Health
Presented by Sharon Hammer & Lisa Hoeme
To support autistic mental health and wellness, we need to be aware of the possible differences in perception and processing of emotions that occur for autistic people. Once we know these differences, as well as the information covered in Part 1 and Part 2 of this series, then, we can look at supporting autistic mental health. In this presentation, Sharon and Lisa will examine the role that interoception and neuroception play in autistic mental health. Then, they will share a variety of tips that can lead to improved mental health and well-being for autistic people. As neuromajority mental health therapists, Sharon and Lisa draw upon their years of experience supporting clients on the autism spectrum. Throughout their presentation, Lisa and Sharon will share numerous quotes and examples from autistic people, highlighting what autistic people have taught them about their experience with stress and trauma.
Judy Endow, LCSW, author and international speaker on a variety of autism-related topics, has written numerous articles and books, including award winners: Learning the Hidden Curriculum: The Odyssey of One Autistic Adult and Paper Words and Discovering and Living with My Autism. As a person who lived some of her early years in an institution, Endow has emerged as a leader in the autism community. A resource specialist and a clinician at Common Threads Family Resource Center in McFarland, WI for several years, she received the Autism Society of America’s Cathy Pratt Professional of the Year Award — the first autistic person to receive this prestigious national award. Endow was featured in the New York Times’ Patient Voices, and was honored by The Art of Autism as one of the most influential bloggers on the web. Endow has made over 400 presentations all over the world.
Sharon Hammer, MS, LPC is a Mental Health and Educational Consultant and a Licensed Professional Counselor. She has over 20-years of experience working with children and individuals on the autism spectrum and their families. Sharon is a partner at Imagine a Child’s Capacity, where she provides training and consultation to schools, community members, and parents. Sharon has co-authored two books and DVDs about using technology to support individuals with autism, entitled Lights! Camera! Autism! With Star Cinema, Sharon co-created the first “Sensory Friendly” movie going experience in the state of Wisconsin. Sharon is committed to increasing awareness and possibilities throughout the community for individuals on the spectrum.
Lisa Hoeme MS, LPC, CRC, CYKF, is a Licensed Professional Counselor and a Consultant at Imagine a Child’s Capacity. She has over 18 years of clinical experience serving an expansive range individuals and families, including those with autism, Down syndrome, traumatic brain injury, attention difficulties, obsessive compulsive disorder, anxiety and depression. In her work as a consultant she provides training and consultation to schools, community agencies, and parents. Lisa also provides psychotherapy, working with clients in home, clinic and group settings and serves as a mental health consultant for the Reach Dane Head Start program. Lisa is committed to helping those she supports to achieve personal growth and overall well-being using a positive, individualized and person-centered approach.
The registration fee includes access to recordings of all three parts of this training. You will receive an email with instructions on how to access the recordings after registering. The registration fee includes access for one participant, access may not be shared. Access to the recordings is good for 3 months after the date of your registration.
Member Rate: $65
Nonmember Rate: $85
Autistic Individual: $30
Participants will have the opportunity to join the presenters for a live Q&A Session hosted on Zoom on Thursday, June 17th from 11am – 12pm.
Certificates of Attendance
Participants that view all 3 parts of the recorded training and complete a post-training survey will receive a certificate of attendance. This training includes 6.25 content hours.
Families enrolled in the Children’s Long-Term Support (CLTS) Waiver or Children’s Community Options Program (CCOP) may be able to use these funds to pay for conference registration fees. Please have your Service Coordinator complete the PDF Form and return to Amber at email@example.com.
We are unable to accept cancellation or refund requests for this training.
The Autism Society of Greater Wisconsin has a limited number of scholarships for families and individuals who need financial assistance. Please email Amber at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Upon registering for the training you will receive a confirmation email containing your access information. If you have registered but have not yet received your access information, please contact Amber at email@example.com.