How Many Parents Have More Than One Child on the Autism Spectrum?

Posted on July 12, 2011

What do Ember, Maia, Ronnie57 and many other parents on have in common? They each have more than one child on the autism spectrum.

In a sibling study between 2003 and 2008, the MIND Institute found that the likelihood of parents having a second child with autism was between 15 and 20%. A 2010 IAN study reported that out of 1,200 families participating, 11% of parents with a child with autism had a second child also diagnosed with ASD.

Last week we conducted an informal poll on the
MyAutismTeam Facebook Page asking parents, “How many children on the autism spectrum do you have?” Exactly 300 of you responded and here’s what you said:

  • Fully 25% of respondents said they have more than 1 child on the autism spectrum. Eight families (3%) reported having 4 or more children on the spectrum.
  • While 75% of you said you had 1 child on the spectrum, we understand that other conditions may impact your other children.

In your comments, profiles and stories on MyAutismTeam, many of you have shared that other siblings have been diagnosed with conditions including ADHD, OCD, BiPolar, Epilepsy, Anxiety Disorder, Cerebral Palsy, Down’s Syndrome, and more.

It makes sense that a site devoted to helping parents find great autism providers for their children (like MyAutismTeam), might attract a larger portion of parents with multiple children on the spectrum. What’s amazing about these parents is how selflessly they share their wisdom and experience with other parents in the community.

Do you have more than one child on the spectrum? Do you have one child on the spectrum with ‘neuro-typical’ siblings? What sorts of ways do you manage routines? Share your comments below or go to MyAutismTeam to share your story.

A MyAutismTeam Member said:

I am glad that you have written this article. It will probably change since now the CDC has increased the prevalence of autism in children to 1 in 59.

posted almost 2 years ago


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