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Family of the Month: “Remington’s Story”

This month, Bethany Wolford shares the story of her son, Remington. “When Remington was about 1 year old, I began to realize his language skills were not developing as they should. We went back and forth regarding having him tested or waiting to see if he would catch up. I started doing research and thought he may have autism. We reached out to Remington’s pediatrician to start the process of getting him tested. We are a military family, so it took almost a year to find a provider who accepted our insurance.

Bethany found Autism ETC and scheduled an appointment with Dr. Michelle McAtee, a clinical psychologist who tests children for autism. Dr. McAtee confirmed Remington was on the autism spectrum.

“Knowing that Remington had autism, I did not want him to enter preschool. I knew he needed more than that, and I wanted him to receive the therapy(s) that would help him.” Remington started the Day Therapy program on a full-time basis at the Professional Park location in Clarksville in 2019.

“As a parent, it was hard to let go and trust other people with my child. We have been blessed with the team that works with Remington. It has been meaningful for him to work with the same people who understand him. He is safe there.”

Bethany says Remington has made great progress since starting at Autism ETC. “He has learned a lot of words and his functional communication skills have improved. He can read and do math at a level beyond his peers.”

Remington recently graduated to the Autism ETC after-school program, a program designed to support older children and help develop their social skills. “He is academically advanced. Therefore, placing him in the public-school setting did not seem to be the right fit for him. So, we are home schooling Remington during the day, and he goes to Autism ETC in the afternoons, where he is surrounded by his peers. Being around children his own age has helped Remington to come out of his shell. He has learned to play with other kids. We have already seen progress in a short period of time.”

Bethany also commended the training and support she has received from Autism ETC. “The parent training sessions have helped me a lot. With cameras in the therapy rooms, I was able to observe him in his sessions at the clinic without his knowledge. Remington’s BCBA, Haley Davis, explains their processes while watching the Registered Behavior Technician work with my child. These sessions have helped me at home to deal with any behavior issues.”

Bethany shares her advice for other families: “Stick with the therapy. Don’t give up on it too quickly. Sometimes it takes time to see the light at the end of the tunnel. When I saw other children who were more advanced than Remington, I wanted to know what it would take to get him there. I believe Remington is where he is today because of Autism ETC.”

As she looks to the future for Remington, Bethany says, “Anyone who knows Remington, knows he is ‘artsy’. He loves music and art, and he loves the beach and skateboards. I see him doing big things and I am excited to see where that takes him.”