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Three Times The Love Hardcover – Mar 24 2009

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4 reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
A personal account, with many helpful resources in the back. July 14 2009
By Cynthia G. - Published on
Format: Hardcover
I checked this book out from the library, and was pleased that it told the story as many autistic families experience the journey: through trial & error. Accurately describing the role of being your child's advocate, these parents have made a real effort to tailor their individual triplets' needs (having different degrees of autism on the spectrum)to the types of therapy they chose. Having attended the Autism Expo they hosted in 2007, I found the resources they listed in the back of the book to be invaluable. Looking for websites & contacts to help your child? The back portion of the book is helpful for parents & their pediatricians as they navigate what is available currently. As a parent & health professional of a 13 year-old son with autism --who regressed from normal infant behaviors to loss of speech, social interactions, & into stimming-- we found that he has made remarkable progress using the same therapies that this family advocates, and he is mostly mainstreamed into middle school. He has regained his speech, reads at the level of Popular Science, plays the piano & violin, collects coins & currencies, loves to ride his bike, go bowling, travel. Overall, this book remains upbeat, when many other books written from a professional's viewpoint can seem overwhelming & overly detailed, this book candidly describes what an autistic family experiences, coupled with what worked for them and suggestions of what resources there are available for families in a similar situation to access for themselves.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Confusing book July 6 2009
By Mamochka - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I was a bit disappointed in this book. The writing was sometimes choppy, jumping quickly from the authors' days of yearning for children, to getting pregnant via IVF, to dealing with their triplets' autism. The book said it would be a road map for other parents to follow, but there is no direction (and perhaps there can never be). The only thing that is certain is that it is good to have a spouse that makes lots of money and has decent health insurance so the other parent can stay home, and it is good to be able to afford a move to a better school district. At the end of the book the authors list the numerous treatments they have tried (some of which have no scientific basis) and their experience with these treatments. Unfortunately they did not always have a good experience with ABA, the only treatment discuss which actually does have lots of research behind it as a promising treatment for autism. As an ABA therapist myself, I can definitely say that there are therapists out there who think they are doing ABA when they are not, and this can lead to a poor experience for a family. The Gastons' therapists used the Lovaas method, with punishment procedures (not negative reinforcement) but there are other ways to do ABA (errorless correction/learning) which the authors might have found more palatable. I think it is great that the family stuck with ABA despite not always having the best experience.

In the end, parents have to make their own treatment choices, for, as the authors say, "when you know one child with autism, you know one child with autism" and it IS hard to generalize to the entire population of children with autism. That is why providing a road map for parents whose child has just been diagnosed, is so difficult, and it is good that the Gastons have taken on what is almost an impossible challenge.

The bottom line is, since no one knows with certainty what causes autism, no one can cure it. Families naturally want to try different treatments (which they should do one at a time so they know which is helping or not). Some treatments out there are downright dangerous (the Gastons did not use any such treatments). ABA as a treatment is constantly evolving, with PBS (positive behavioral supports) now getting a lot of attention. As is the Early Start Denver Model for very young children with autism, which I find very exciting, and an improvement/expansion on some ABA practices.

Families with multiples with autism travel a hard, challenging road and all available resources should be offered to them.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Compelling story, so well written Feb. 25 2010
By SLB - Published on
I expected 'Three Times the Love' to be an interesting and informative story, particularly for someone with no exposure to a child with autism. What I didn't expect was for the book to be quite a well written and engrossing page-turner. Thanks to staying up way too late two nights in a row, I was able to finish it quickly.

The book is set up in such a helpful way - first the story, from conception to present day with the children; then a detailed account, along with personal experiences, of a variety of therapies and treatments.

The Gastons have an amazing and inspiring story, one that all parents can learn from. Their tenacious pursuit of first a diagnosis and then the appropriate school placement and therapies for each of the boys is a real testiment to love and dedication. It's also enlightening to learn just how complicated autism is, and how difficult it is for parents to navigate the medical and school communities. Along with the day in and day out work that comes along with a triple diagnosis of autism, they have become advocates that pave the way for other parents, an interesting story in and of itself.

I would recommend this book, of course, to the parents and family members of a child with autism. But I'd also recommend it to anyone who works with children with special needs, particularly autism. It's one thing to have a professional career that involves special needs; quite another to read what the families experience right from the beginning.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Life with Triplets with Autism April 2 2009
By Joanne Gareau - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I've just finished reading Lynn and Randy Gaston's story about their life with triplet boys with autism. I think it's an excellent and helpful book for parents of children newly diagnosed with autism, those who suspect their child may have autism, parents of multiples with autism, and any family members or professionals who want to know more about the daily life of families living with children with autism. The Gaston's, who have appeared on TV and spear-headed an Autism Expo to connect and share with other parents, describe their path so far, the pitfalls, their hopes and dreams, and available therapies. It is simply told. Their story is my daughter's story.
Gramma of twins with autism