#90 - Teen to Adult Transition Insights from a Self Advocate

disability advocate self determination

We hear a lot and think a lot about the inevitable time of transitioning out of school services and into adult services. It has been coined “when the bus stops coming” or “falling off the cliff.’ What does this time of life feel like from the perspective of the person actually going through it? From the perspective of the individual with differing abilities?

Self Advocate Melissa Crisp-Cooper shares her journey, gives parents a pep talk, and expresses where challenges still exist in her life 20 years later.

About the Guest:

Melissa Crisp-Cooper is a writer, adventure seeker, and health advocate.  She has cerebral palsy, and navigates the world using a purple power wheelchair.  Melissa and her husband Owen live in Oakland, CA with two opinionated black cats.  Together, Melissa and Owen love to travel, eat good food, and stretch out in their adaptive yoga class. 

Click here to read the self advocacy booklet mentioned in the episode that was authored by Melissa. More of Melissas health advocacy work can be found on the Office of Developmental Primary Care Advocacy page.


Melissa recommends the self advocacy resources listed below:

The NYT disability opinion series 

Collection of essays in the book About Us by Molly McCully Brown

The Accessible Stall Podcast with Emily Ladau and Kyle Khachadurian 

Disability Visibility Project with Alice Wong:

Rooted in Rights

Autistic Self-Advocacy Network

Disability Organizing Network

Green Mountain Self-Advocates

Related Episodes:

Episode #70 - Do This, Not That: Lessons from a Self Advocate with Angela West

Episode #25 - Think College with Kate Weir

Episodes #86-#97 make up the Transition Planning series which focus on creating the post secondary transition plan that goes in the IEP at the age of 14 or 16.