I've been thinking a lot lately about trying to implement some kind of program(s) where I would mentor kids, teens, and young adults who share my disabilities. I'm thinking that having a model of an adult who is successful--and I consider myself successful, largely because of my career success--would be helpful and reassuring to younger people & their "grown-ups" (as we say at the library). Also, I've gained a good deal of experience in dealing with these disabilities that I would like to share. I'm concerned, though, on how the parents (& other concerned adults) will react. What do the parents\other concerned adults of kids with disabilities think? Have any other adults with disabilities tried this type of activity?
The content on this website mostly comes from my perspective as a youth services librarian with disabilities. The further I travel along life's road, the more entwined these two parts of my identity become. Librarian: I have an MLS from Rutgers University and have working in public libraries for nearly 20 years. The focus on my career has always been youth services. Disabled: I've been disabled more than twice as long as I've been a librarian. My experience started at birth when I was immediately diagnosed with cleft palate. Also present was a non-verbal learning disability (NLD) for short. This was not formally diagnosed until I was 19, leading to years of frustration. My Tourette Syndrome was not present at birth, but surely started young as I don't ever remember living without it. The Tourette was also not diagnosed until adulthood, further compounding my frustration. Coincidentally, I was also diagnosed with IBD (more commonly known as Chron's\Ulcerative Colitis) at the age of 19. That was another easy diagnosis--as with cleft palate, they look and they see it.