The Parenting Cipher
The Man: Journey to Embracing and Thriving with Tourettes Syndrome
In this episode of The Parenting Cipher, William Atkins IV, a high school senior, joins Genie to talk about his experience having Tourette’s Syndrome. William, joined by his mother, shares about getting his diagnosis, making friends, and setting goals and aspirations. Hear about what helped him accept himself and take exciting chances in this episode of The Parenting Cipher.
Host of The Parenting Cipher, Genie Dawkins is a single mother of four and has over 25 years of being a parent advocate of special needs children. In addition to obtaining her Certification in Integrative Health Coaching, Lateefa holds an M.S. in Non-Profit Management and a B.S. in Social Sciences. Genie is the best-selling author of two books “Not My Child: Navigating Your Child’s Learning Difficulties with IEP’s and Education Resources” and a recent release “The Joyful Family Planner”. As an educational advocacy specialist, her mission is to help parents achieve a balanced life and overcome inevitable challenges both at school and home in a way that empowers parents and children.
About our Guest:
William Atkins IV is a senior at McKinley Technology High School in Washington D.C.. He is on the varsity swim team, in a group called Men of Tech, and is a rising leader and Youth Ambassador for the National Tourette’s Association of America, where he spreads awareness about his Tourette’s Syndrome. William’s mother, Tanya Atkins, joins him.
Insight from this episode:
- What is Tourette’s Syndrome?
- Details on what it’s like growing up with Tourette’s, from making friends to accepting the diagnosis.
- William’s experience living with Tourette’s, including joining the swim team in high school.
- Reflections on when your child goes off to college.
Quotes from the show:
- “I had started posting about [Tourette’s on social media] and continued posting about it because at school people didn’t know what was going on, so I figured it was just an easier way to tell everyone instead of everyone looking at me and giving me the side eye. Lot of people are on social media, so it’s just easy. If you see the post, then you know.” –William Atkins IV The Parenting Cipher Ep. #9
- “The more people know, then the more they’re able to accept. Otherwise they come up with their own story.” –Genie Dawkins The Parenting Cipher Ep. #9
- “I’m entrusting I have instilled great morals and values in my son. He knows right from wrong, and he knows what to do and what not to do. And I know he’s going to be really successful… I’m willing to let him go.” –Tanya Atkins (William’s mom) The Parenting Cipher Ep. #9
- “I didn’t know that [Tourette’s] included other things, because all you hear is the swearing part.” –Tanya Atkins (William’s mom) The Parenting Cipher Ep. #9
- “Although we do, as Black young men, we do face [trials], we gotta keep pushing, keep going, and keep striving because when we do, we can set examples for other people.” –William Atkins IV The Parenting Cipher Ep. #9
- “If you’re a role model and you’re a leader, people of different ethnicities, different races, different social backgrounds, different sexualities, different everything, they should be able to look at you and say, I learned something from him or her.” –William Atkins IV The Parenting Cipher Ep. #9
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William Atikins IV
LinkedIn: William Atkins IV
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Post-production for this episode was provided by Podcast Laundry.