AdulthoodQuestions to Consider
Charting the Life Course is a tool, developed by the Supporting Families Community of Practice and the University of Missouri Kansas City, to assist you in creating a vision for the future. It is designed to help families think about the questions to ask as you “plot a course” to a full and meaningful life for a family member with a disability. Individuals and families can focus on their current stage of life, but families may also find it useful to look towards the future to start thinking about what they can do or learn now that will help build an inclusive, productive life.
The Supporting Families Community of Practice believes that this "life course approach" helps families realize that even when children are young and as they grow into adulthood, their experiences and environment can shape how they will live their life in the future.
Here's just a few questions that the "Life Course approach" encourages families to consider, if they have an adult family member with a disability.
- What will I do during the day now that I am an adult? Will I have a full time job, part time job, volunteer, or go to some sort of program?
- Where can I learn or improve my employment skills? Can I turn an interest of mine into a way to earn income/start my own business?
- Do I know how, or is there someone to assist me with tasks such as meal planning, cooking, or grocery shopping?
- What kind of supports do I need to live outside the family home?
- Do I want to live with a roommate or alone? Has anyone asked me if I prefer to choose my own roommate? Do I need staff, or could a roommate be compensated to provide some of my supports?
- How am I exploring or developing my interests or finding new ones?
- How do I get around to places I need or want to go?
- Would a limited or joint bank account, automatic bill pay or a debit card help me with managing my own money?
- What can I do in the community for fun and friendship? Do I have friends with and without disabilities?
- Do you and others understand what I want and what is important to me?
For a full list of questions families can consider for this stage of life, download the Charting the Life Course booklet and other resources at http://www.lifecoursetools.com/.
The questions in Charting the Life Course are written to reflect a “first person” perspective across the lifespan to represent the viewpoint of the person with a disability and the on-going transformation to an adult who is self-determined, autonomous and independent.