MT mother shares story of son for Autism Awareness Month

Everything in the first 18 months of Trinette Smitherman's son's life everything seemed almost perfect.

"He was saying full sentences, he was running, playing," Smitherman said about her son Dustin.

Then something changed.

"He started losing his speech, his tactile abilities, being able to grab things, move, run," Smitherman said. "It's like all of the sudden he went into another world."

From there Smitherman was thrown into a tumultuous world, filled with doctors who only had questions themselves.

"They didn't understand why the sensory issues, and why his world all of the sudden just closed," Smitherman said.

Finally the diagnosis came: Autism Spectrum Disorder.

"It's almost in a way, the death of your child's spirit," Smitherman said. "It's like you kind of mourn, you're angry and then you accept it. That's how I kind of describe in a way autism because it's so still unknown."

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