Corina Morillo discusses with the audience at TED how she learned to communicate with her son who has autism, and how others can too.
When Morillo's son was diagnosed with autism at two and a half, being unable to speak and maintain eye contact, and Morillo and her husband did not have the Internet to help them discover how to help navigate how their son Ivan experienced the world. At the beginning, they had to base their insights entirely on intuition. She learned early on that her son had an exceptional visual memory, and decided that this is how she would teach him about the world. She started teaching him through pictures, and at 15 years old her son Ivan is still unable to speak but communicates through images on his iPad.
Corina Morillo also tells the story of Jose, a man who owned the local grocery store who helped Ivan once a week by allowing him to come and organize shelves in the store in exchange for a box of cookies. She explains that Jose was not a hero, or an expert, but that he was there for her child and that's all that mattered. She ends by saying "let's have the courage to look each other in the eye, because by looking, we can open a whole world to someone else."
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