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ASD and African American Mothers

Article: Experiences of African American Mothers of Sons with Autism Spectrum Disorder: Lessons for Improving Service Delivery. By Lovelace and others. In Education and Training in Autism and Developmental Disabilities, 2018, 53(1).

This was a qualitative study. I am dubious about the basic premise of the study-that there is limited research looking at the experience of minority parents of children with ASD, and so they need to do a qualitative study. It is true that there is limited research, and it is also true that when a field of research is new and researchers are just testing the waters, qualitative studies are one way to go. I do not get the impression, however, that this qualitative study moved things forward.

This should not diminish the message that if having a child with ASD can be stressful for parents, it is quite possibly even more stressful for parents representing minority groups. One research finding which has been reported extensively is that non-white ASD kids receive their diagnosis as much as 2 years later than white kids. Clinically-speaking, this is hugely significant and research examining ways to close this gap would likely have an enormous impact on people's lives.

A note on the image I use to adorn this post: I found it ironic that the supposedly white baby with the stethoscope was much more accessible than any other from a group of free stock photos.

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