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Documentary follows disabled young person into adulthood

In a documentary-style series, the television network MTV is exploring what it is like for a young person with a disability to transition into adulthood and independent living. The show follows a 21-year-old who has autism and ADHD.

The host of the show lived with the 21-year-old for a year and documented his life as he graduates from high school, tries to find a job and begins dating. The show's host said the network realized it had an "opportunity to humanize and destigmatize what it's like to have autism."

He added that about one in 88 American children are diagnosed with some form of autism and it is something that deserves more attention in the media. The host said that viewers may originally think the show is merely about living with a mental disorder, but eventually they learn that there is much more to the young man, including a great sense of humor.

Many people who are diagnosed with a developmental disorder on the autism spectrum are able to successfully transition into adulthood and find full time employment. But when people with autism find that their disability gets in the way of maintaining a career, they may be eligible for Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits.

SSD benefits are indented to supplement the income that is lost due to a serious and long-term mental or physical impairment that prevents a person from being gainfully employed. People who had made sufficient earning over the 10 years prior to applying for SSD are paid through the Social Security Disability Insurance program.

People who have not earned a sufficient income over the preceding 10 years may be eligible for benefits under the Supplement Security Income program. Typically, disabled children and young people qualify for SSD benefits under this program.

Source: Disability Scoop, "With 'World Of Jenks,' MTV Tackles Transition," Lesley Young, March 1, 2013

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