BEFORE BEN HIRASUNA showed up for the first job interview of his life, he went for weeks at a time without leaving his parents’ home in Santa Monica. Outside, sun poured down; inside, he looked at the top of his forearm and noticed it was every bit as pale as its underside. To say Hirasuna is shy is to say the ocean is big — it captures nothing of the vastness of the feeling. He managed to attend college at Arizona State for just over a year but returned home for good in November 2017. For a few months, he took some classes at a local community college, but eventually his routine gave way to solitude at home. During the day, he slept; at night he rose to battle the enemy in futuristic cities and pastel landscapes on his PC, or tinkered on another monitor with any of the codes (Java, Perl, Rust, C++ and C#) he taught himself in high school. Finally, last November, his parents insisted that he get a job — any job, at the bakery down the street or at McDonald’s, if it came to read more
AANE is delighted to announce that we plan to expand by merging with Asperger Syndrome & High Functioning Autism Association (AHA). For over 30 years, AHA, a non-profit organization with offices in Manhattan and Long Island has been an important resource and thought leader in the Asperger/Autism community. We have known, collaborated with, and respected AHA for years and are thrilled to join forces with this highly regarded and like-minded organization. We anticipate that AHA will become part of AANE early in the new year. Read More
Erin Lefevre has been photographing her brother for years to better understand his experiences as a teenager with autism. In the ensuing project, “Liam’s World,” they collaborate as he captions her photos, describing what he felt at the time.