I vividly remember all the feelings and thoughts that went through my head when Aidan was diagnosed with Autism. I remember worrying about the “right now” problems as I sat in the doctor’s office, how do I get him the right classroom, are medications the right options, how much are his therapies going to cost, why him? After I left the doctors armed with a folder jam-packed with referrals and reading pantalets, I drove home with a sleeping toddler in the backseat and that’s when the future started to really play games with my head. What if he couldn’t get through school, what if he couldn’t work, what-ifs were swirling through my brain so fast that I hardly had time to imagine an outcome. The biggest what if was, what if we don’t have the financial resources to help him prosper and be self-sufficient. We have been through a lot of ups and downs since that day 6 years ago, and I have learned a lot along the way and I’m still learning. I only recently learned about the ABLEnow program, and I was honored when they asked to partner with me on this sponsored post.
The cost of a disability like autism is incredibly overwhelming, between medications, therapies, specialists, exc. and many don’t understand that even with private health insurances the copayments alone are enough to put families in debt. Luckily, we live in a country that offers public benefits for people with disabilities based on their income. However, for far too long people with disabilities could not save for the future without the possibility of losing their public benefits.
When Aidan was first diagnosed, he had already been expelled from 2 daycare programs and his lack of safety awareness became such a source of anxiety that I could no longer leave him with anyone besides immediate family who was educated about his needs. I had to leave my job, my husband was working full time, but his job did not offer benefits, and times got tough. We ended up being able to get Aidan on Supplemental Security Income and Medicaid, which helped tremendously, however, we could not have over a certain amount in savings and assets to remain eligible.
At the time I was hoping we would only need these services for a short time. However, the idea that he would need these services as an adult to be able to achieve a more independent life has always been a strong possibility. The thought that he would not be able to save for the future and be able to achieve some of the same financial dreams that his non-disabled peers out of fear of losing these much-needed benefits, was heartbreaking. Luckily advocates fought hard to change this, resulting in the federal ABLE Act and the new ABLEnow program.
ABLEnow gives people with disabilities the power to achieve greater independence, financial security, and quality of life that was not possible before.
For the first time, eligible individuals can save and invest in a simple, affordable, and tax-advantaged ABLEnow account without jeopardizing their eligibility for certain benefits that are critical to their health and well-being, such as Medicaid and Supplemental Security Income (SSI). This gives people with disabilities and their caregiver’s peace of mind that we did not think was achievable prior to ABLEnow.
An ABLEnow account can pay for a variety of qualified expenses related to maintaining health, independence, and quality of life, such as housing and living expenses.
It gives individuals a greater sense of financial independence and a reliable tool to build the best life possible.
Are you disabled? Or are you caring for someone with a disability? Opening and managing an ABLEnow account can be done online and are free to start, Learn more today!
This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of ABLEnow.