Be Strong, Be Tough, Be Smart tells one family's unique tale of championing a child with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD) from infancy to adulthood. Alfredano and Star offer empathetic emotional support, as well as practical tips for connecting with your child with autism.
When Donato Alfredano's son “Denny” was diagnosed with autism 30 years ago, Alfredano and his wife faced previously unimaginable trials: lack of information about Denny's condition, social isolation, and the daily fight to balance caring for their brilliant but difficult son with life's myriad of other challenges. The Alfredano family, including Denny's younger sister, Giada Star, weathered years of trial and error with unwavering dedication to, and faith in, each other. They saw Denny go from an uncommunicative toddler to a respected PhD.
As he navigated medical and educational systems, Alfredano realized that considerable progress could be made at home through individually tailored interactions with his ASD child.
Told in personal anecdotes and easy-to-follow snippets of practical advice, Be Strong, Be Tough, Be Smart lets parents know they are not alone. Alfredano doesn't promise easy answers, but his family's story shows that with fortitude and persistence, there is hope for every child with autism.
©2014 Donato Alfredano (P)2014 Donato Alfredano
For starters I think the message that speaks the loudest in this book is that parental love has no boundaries in education, research, commitment or results. This is an uplifting and realistic perspective from folks who have lived on the front lines of autism.
They did it during a time much of the debate and confusion of what it was and how it affected individual kids who grew to be adults with autism. Adults who go on to live productive lives that are engaged, with the world around them interactively and not hidden away as flawed.
In my mind, the interesting part of this journey was that they really had no advantages when they were in the middle of the struggle. Looking for answers in the age before the internet where the most you could hope for was a Research Library close enough to utilize.
This book is set up to help parents currently dealing with the challenge to plan and implement a home program if you will. That makes quick work of advice, been there anecdotes which I would think are the most helpful.
But more important than all that a voice to listen to who has faced the Autism negative diagnosis and as a family turned it into not just a positive because this book is so much more than any “my glass is half full” platitudes book.
I'm giving this book five stars because it doesn't sugar coat the reality it just serves hope on the side as dip.
As someone who works with many children with autism, this book was particularly interesting. The author does a great job of conveying hope and giving his account on how persistence and constant dedication has led to better results in dealing with his autistic child. Very inspirational on many levels and I am glad I found this book. Highly recommended.
A friend recommend this audio book to me. I am so stress out caring for my 5 year old ASD daughter, that some days, I have to just walk away and cry. So far I've read this twice and plan to read it again because of the empathetic emotion support, and practical tips which have helped me cope.
I liked the log notes, the part when Alfredano and Star, his daughter talk about their personal feeling concerning Denny's behavior.
Natalya Bykov's voice was very sincere and full of emotion.
Roger Buehler's voice was fatherly and concerned. I was right there with both of these readers.
This was an amazing audio book, I'm glad that this family shared their hard work and overwhelming love for this child with me. Thank you.
Yes! This is because of the way I learn, however. For some people, the print version may be better. I noticed that this is WhisperSync ready so people do not necessarily have to choose. They can have the ebook and the audiobook both and switch back and forth with ease.
This book was just short enough to be divided evenly into two parts that I listened to on my way to work and on my way home. I have a fairly long commute and this book really helped me get through it with ease. I was sad to turn if off in the morning on arriving to work because I really wanted to continue to listen to it.
I am a teacher for special populations, which includes autistic students. This book really brings to life the struggles and triumphs a family dealing with autism face. I will be a better teacher for reading this book.
Yes, because I can listen to in on my device any time. It gives the freedom to decide where I want to listen, and it is less limiting.
I like the lessons learned. It is always good to learn from other people's experience and take away lessons for your own life
When you listen to it, the entire experience comes to life. Although when you read, your own imagination projects the experience, so listening gives you the full emotional and tonal value of what the author wants you to experience.
This is a brilliant book, and I love how the information and practical tips about Autism has been entangled into a beautiful true story which is easy to relate to and follow, whether you have Autistic children or not. It is a unique journey following an inspirational young boy, and his parents, in finding ways to make every child with autism content.
"Ten things every child with autism wishes you knew" is another lovely book, it which helps parents understand their child's needs and how they are feeling.
I love the part in which, after all the searching and speaking with expert's the family come to a realization that small changes at home, once implemented could instantly change their life and their son Denny's.
Yes, I found gripped by the story, and wanted to know what was happening next. It was as if I was on the same journey as the Alfredano's and one in which I could relate to. It was wonderful spoken and kept my full attention.
A beautiful read, breathtaking, and a real inspiration with lots of wonderful tips and help for parents with autistic children. I thoroughly enjoyed it, and would definitely recommend it to others!
There's a lot of info about autism out there, but this book does a great job of giving the listener a personal, in-depth look. It's virtually impossible to ever see someone's situation from their perspective, but you get a feel for the father-son bond in this unique circumstance. If you're someone (especially a dad) who knows someone with autism, you will be able to relate.
"The Reason I Jump," although there are major differences.
The human voice brings a more personal touch to the story.
I loved hearing about the "turning point."
I love reading, history, and the outdoors.
Emotional, powerful, and inspiring.
Denny running into the snowy woods without any shoes was quite an intense moment. Once the author gives Denny a strict lesson on how to behave( being in the drive way in 5 minutes) I feel was a quite dramatic moment for both the son and his father.
Such an inspiring read! Working with high-risk youth and those with special cases made me connect with the book. I quite appreciate the first-hand accounts the author documents and the lessons he derives from his son, Denny. After reading this novel, I take with me a few new lessons in deal with students with ASD. Even if you don't personally have encounters with a child with ASD, it's still a quite powerful story. I believe this is way I enjoyed the book: it was two levels. In one hand, it's a powerful story about a father dealing the the strifes of life. On a second level the book reads an a stepping stool for knowledge in dealing with a child with ASD.
I'm not a parent; I'm actually your typical teenager--but this book was very moving. I know what autism is, and I've had the chance to work with kids with autism (and other special needs) in the past, but this really put things into perspective for me. It is very uplifting, the strength and love the parents have. Even though it was a short audiobook, it was very impactful, and I hope that the stories here will help some parents out there. Five stars for everything!
This is a story that has moved me from the start. I was amazed and inspired by this father's faith and strength in the face of adversity. It shows how with dedication and thoughtful parenting, children with autism can do better and improve their life a great deal. This book makes a great gift as well, glad I stumbled on it.
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