When your child with #Autism turns 18 and you need to obtain legal guardianship

Gavin will be turning eighteen years of age on January 18th. Unfortunately, he’s unable to survive on his own and is also unable to make his own decisions, at least not without major help. His cognitive ability is continually declining and we have no choice but to seek permanent guardianship over him.

We’ve never been through this process before but have acquired the paperwork and have the appointment with his psychiatrist to fill it out.

I hate the idea of having to do this but it’s unquestionably in Gavin’s best interest.

My goal is to share this new journey and help provide insight into this process. It’s important to understand that not all kids with Autism will need something like this when they turn eighteen. Gavin is severely cognitively impaired and simply lacks the capacity to exist without supervision.



Guardianship basically changes nothing. It simply allows us to continue doing what we’ve been doing both for and with Gavin, after his eighteenth birthday.

This will allow us to legally make decisions for him, continue being in charge of his medical care, and legal decisions.

This in no way means that we are going to give up on Gavin gaining any independence. Think of guardianship as a fall back, in the event we need to intervene. We have always and will always encourage him to exert as much control over his life as he’s capable of exerting.

How many of you have had to go through this process?

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