How to Improve Your Sex Life: Risk Living Dangerously

This post originally appeared on Huffington Post in October 2014.

A couple recently came into my office.  On paper, they had a reasonably healthy marriage. Greg had suffered some setbacks at work, and got depressed sometimes, but Sue did her best to be kind and generous. They still got the kids to soccer games, managed work demands, went to church every Sunday. Most significantly, they tried hard to avoid fighting, and they had basically succeeded.

Read the full piece here.

The Kids Will Be All Right: ‘Beating’ Autism

This post originally appeared on Huffington Post in September, 2014.

If “hope” was a drug, the worst addicts would be parents. Proof came in a recent New York Times Magazine cover story, “The Kids Who Beat Autism,” which offered a few Cinderella stories against a common evil step-sister, the motley crew of diagnoses lumped into Autistic Spectrum Disorder.

Read the full piece here.

A Pathway, Not a Prison

This post originally appeared on Slate in April, 2014. Written by Hanna Rosin.

Many children on the autism spectrum develop affinities, or what we might call obsessions. They focus on things like train schedules, maps, baseball scores, video games, or, in the case of Owen Suskind, the subject of his father, Ron Suskind’s, new book, Life, Animated, classic Disney movies. We could also call these “affinities” passions, but the psychiatric establishment might object to that positive spin, because “affinities” are generally thought of as symptoms, signs of the child getting tangled up in his or her own repetitive thoughts. They are considered the autistic child’s way of warding off the world because it’s too scary or confusing to engage. If therapists indulge affinities, it’s generally as a reward for the child attempting appropriate social behavior. (Make eye contact and I’ll let you watch Aladdin).

Read the full piece here.

Life, Animated

Dr. Griffin was featured in a book and related documentary entitled Life, Animated.

The Life, Animated book by Ron Suskind was published in April, 2014.

Learn about the Life, Animated documentary here. It is expected in theaters in 2016.


Psychologist On Disney Movies’ ‘Gravitational Pull’ For Autistic Patient

This post originally appeared on HuffPost Live in March 2015.

Dr. Dan Griffin joins HuffPost Live to discuss why Autistic children are drawn to Disney movies.

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To watch the full interview, click here.

Reaching My Autistic Son Through Disney

This piece originally appeared in The New York Times in March 2014. By Ron Suskind.

In our first year in Washington, our son disappeared.

Just shy of his 3rd birthday, an engaged, chatty child, full of typical speech — “I love you,” “Where are my Ninja Turtles?” “Let’s get ice cream!” — fell silent. He cried, inconsolably. Didn’t sleep. Wouldn’t make eye contact. His only word was “juice.”

Read the full article here.