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Autism: All in This Family

Sep 10, 2008  •  Post A Comment

Autism is getting more attention in the media, but a special scheduled to appear Oct. 1 on Discovery Health takes a unique look at how one family is dealing with an extraordinary burden caused by the condition.
“Autism X6” looks at the Kirton family, who live outside Salt Lake City, Utah. John and Robin Kirton wanted a large family, so they had six kids. Each child has been diagnosed with autism.
The special shows the difficulties this family faces: They live in a modest 1,100-square-foot home with a single bathroom, and because the children require around-the-clock supervision, neither parent can hold down a full-time job.
The documentary also serves as an illustration of the unconditional love parents feel for their children, the network said.
“We did not choose to have autistic children, but they are here,” Mr. Kirton said in a statement. “We love them, and we want to do the best we can for them. That’s the right thing to do.”
The Kirton kids are Bobby, 14, who was diagnosed with Asperger’s syndrome, a high-functioning form of autism; Emma, 10, and Nephia, 9, both also with Asperger’s; Sarah, 6, and Ammon, 4, both diagnosed with classic autism, the most severe type, and Mary, 3, who has pervasive development disorder, the least severe from of autism.

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