Justin & Cheri Scott
Justin Scott shares with help from his mom, Cheri Scott
I’m Justin Scott. I am 33 years old. I have FAS and other disabilities.
Here’s the fun stuff:
I live in Anchorage with my mom Cheri, my dad Allan and my niece Rosebud. We live in a co-housing community where we have many friends and neighbors that help each other.
We have a soft and fat, black and white cat named Sophie, a fluffy brown bunny named Emmett and Data the Betta fish.
I met my girlfriend Crystal in 2005 at a FASD Family Camp at Braeburn Lake in the Yukon and in 2013 we had a Commitment ceremony in Whitehorse. It is very hard living so far away from each other. Our families help us talk to each other. I wish we could live together, but if we move to the other person’s country we will lose our public assistance benefits and health coverage. I miss my Crystal every day.
I use an iPad, a laptop and a BIG computer monitor screen to stay in touch with my girlfriend and my other friends and family. My friend Kate at ATLA (Assistive Technology of Alaska) helped me and my parents get these things and learn how to use them. I learned how to save pictures from email to my iPad photo album, and how to use a program that reads whatever is on the computer screen out loud to me. Kate showed me how to make the print on my computer screen H U G E! That makes it much easier for me to read.
Here’s the hard stuff:
I have lots of trouble hearing and seeing so I use glasses and hearing aids. I use sign language because I can’t speak very well. But if I’m in a quiet place I can probably understand what people say to me.
I have a hard time when people are talking too fast or not looking at me when they talk. They need to be close so I can see what they are saying, too.
It can take me a while to understand what people want and then answer them. Sometimes they give up and say something else, or they turn and walk away thinking I don’t want to talk to them. That makes me feel bad, like they don’t like me or are mad at me.
I have cerebral palsy so I use crutches and sometimes a wheelchair or walker if I will be going a long way. I need someone close when I’m outside because I can’t see the edges of the street, holes or stairs very well and might trip or fall if someone doesn’t warn me.
I have epilepsy which means sometimes my brain works too fast and I can’t control my body movements or breathing. That’s the scariest thing I have, but my medication helps keep me from having seizures most of the time.
Thanks for helping me write this, Mom.