WASHINGTON - The Parvizian family is well known across the area for their hard work selling beautiful furniture and rugs to residents of the DMV. Allen Parvizian, and his wife Goli, also work hard at raising their family – which includes Cameron, their 12-year-old son who is on the autism spectrum. FOX 5’s Shawn Yancy spoke with them about their journey.
Cameron was 18-months-old when he was diagnosed, and his family says they have gone through lots of ups and downs since then. Goli said the most difficult period came during the diagnosis itself. "I think for any parent it's really hard to come to terms and just accept that it's your son…it's your child. Why me?" she said. She said periods of self-blame followed the diagnosis – but eventually they pulled through.
"You're confused," Allen said. "You don't know which way to look." He said the family started Cameron with intensive speech therapy, occupational therapy, and Applied Behavior Analysis therapy.
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IT CAN HAPPEN TO ANYONE
"It does not discriminate…it's unfortunate…it happens to anyone at any class level," Goli said. "My heart goes out to those families that can't afford."
Allen said that as Cameron grew older, his work situation and finding the money for treatment put major stress on their family. He said that he spent much of his time on the road working, leaving his wife behind top address their son’s developmental problems.
"You do need to voice it. You need to let it out. You hold it in, and you realize - you're not helping yourself or anybody else because there are other families out there that may have the same issues."
ON AND OFF THE SPECTRUM
Cameron and his brother Darrin - who are close in age - have a special bond, the parents say. Now Allen and Goli are working to educate their other children about what living with autism is really like.
"We’re not a typical family…we’re our own typical family," Goli said.
Ask the boys who is better at sports and they’ll both agree – Cameron takes the prize.
Another skill of Cameron's – spinning anything on his finger – except the stuff that can break.
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