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I don’t have an autistic child. many within the autistic community actually don’t prefer “person first” language. Without their diagnosis, they wouldn’t be who they are and is why they say “I’m autistic” rather than “I’m a person with autism” or “I have autism” – the words of several autistic people I know. Please don’t put down the word choice of others as it may be preferred or most appropriate for their personal situation. My son is 8 and was completely nonverbal for 6 years. Now he’s considered “pre-verbal” AAC has been an amazing blessing. We use Proloquo2go on an ipad. He can navigate many pages and knows hundreds of words. We’re starting to work on sentences. Over the past 1.5- 2 years we’ve started getting vocal speech which is incredible!! He has about 50 word approximations, answers yes and no questions, can ask for his favorite foods, toys, and movies, and says love you . But those outside his circle usually struggle to understand him. My son is 14 and nonverbal. He does type on his iPad to help communicate his wants/needs. He requests food items most of all but we work daily to try and expand his communication skills. I am thankful for what he does have as we spent over a decade with silence and no way to communicate.