UGA Libraries Logo

Interview with Bill Bowen, February 14, 2017

Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies, University of Georgia
Toggle Index/Transcript View Switch.
Search this Index
00:00:18 - Billy's diagnosis of Asperger's

Play segment

Partial Transcript: Where does your family live?

Segment Synopsis: Bowen discusses the places he has lived in the past twenty years. Bowen recalls his son's diagnosis time frame, particularly focused on the unusual amount of time it took to get an official diagnosis of Asperger's. Bill then goes into further detail about the diagnosis process, centered around the medical personnel involved.

Keywords: Athens; Barrow County; IEP (Individualized Education Program); MD (Medical Consultant); diagnosis; diagnosis timeline; psychologist; sensory; social anxiety; therapist

00:07:01 - Bowen's outlook on Billy's treatment process / Billy's medicinal and social assistance

Play segment

Partial Transcript: Have you been satisfied so far?

Segment Synopsis: Bowen is asked about his satisfaction with Billy's treatment process at school. Bowen expresses his approval of the process and his wish for more individual funding. Bowen discusses Billy's anxiety, specifically his preference of social isolation. Bowen gives a description of Billy's specialized therapists and their role in his daily life.

Keywords: MD (Doctor of Medicine); Oconee County schools; accelerated classes; advocate; aggression; anxiety; comfort zone; isolation; psychiatrist; psychologist; therapist

00:15:11 - Planning Billy's appointments / Coping with parental absence

Play segment

Partial Transcript: Who plans all of these appointments?

Segment Synopsis: Bowen explains his wife's (Eva) handling of Billy's many psychological and medicinal appointments. Bowen mentions how Billy tolerates the absence of one parent but does not cope well with the absence of both. Lastly, Bowen discusses his reluctance to leave Billy with a non-immediate family member.

Keywords: anxiety; anxiety attacks; appointment; parental leave; stomach ache; vacation

00:21:49 - Billy's general routine / Responding to change

Play segment

Partial Transcript: Could you describe Billy's routine?

Segment Synopsis: Bowen provides an in-depth look into Billy's daily routine and explains how Asperger's affects otherwise typical actions. Bowen then gives an explanation of how he responds to Billy disinclination toward changes in schedule.

Keywords: change; incentives; pickiness; regularity; routine

00:27:21 - Billy's extracurricular activities / Struggling with anxiety

Play segment

Partial Transcript: You mention a few interests that Billy has.

Segment Synopsis: Bowen gives insight into Billy's extracurricular activities while emphasizing his son's preference for routine. Bowen goes into further detail by revealing Billy's reactions to change of routine, and how he (Bowen) handles Billy's anxiety.

Keywords: Athens-Clarke County; anxiety; over-sensitivity; physical activity; teamwork

00:35:12 - Pre-diagnosis behaviors / Billy's self-recognition of Asperger's

Play segment

Partial Transcript: What were some of the signs you noticed before he was diagnosed?

Segment Synopsis: Bowen recollects Billy's behaviors before being diagnosed with Asperger's, admitting his initial misconception that Billy had developed sensory problems. Bowen then discusses how Billy's distaste for social events led to an eventual diagnosis of Asperger's, and how Billy moved from denial to acceptance of his condition.

Keywords: meltdown; mood changes; social gatherings; temper; textures

00:42:19 - Financial aspect of Asperger's / Billy's future

Play segment

Partial Transcript: Was that a big step forward for him when he accepted...

Segment Synopsis: Conversation opens up with a continuation of Billy's acceptance of his condition.The topic then switches to the financial weight placed on Bowen and his wife due to Billy's condition. Bowen restates his expectation that Billy will eventually become independence.

Keywords: autism; economic; finances; health insurance; self-perception

00:51:50 - Bowen's advice to other parents / Effect of Asperger's on Bowen's marriage

Play segment

Partial Transcript: What is the best piece of advice you think you could give some other parents...

Segment Synopsis: Bowen gives insight as to what advice he would give to parents of children diagnosed with autism. Bowen stresses the fact that every child is unique in his or her behaviors and preferences. Bowen then recalls how he and his wife have changed as a couple through the years, dealing with a child diagnosed with Asperger's.

Keywords: autism; marriage; parental advice; patience

01:00:09 - Bowen and his wife in dealing with frustration

Play segment

Partial Transcript: Stress and frustration that you guys go through--how do you deal with that?

Segment Synopsis: Bowen reveals how he and wife manage when dealing with stress due to Billy's condition. Bowen reveals his predisposition to remove himself periodically from tantrums, allowing the situation to alleviate itself. Additionally, Bowen discusses how he and his wife respond to Billy's behavioral episodes by waiting on him emotionally self-regulate. Bowen recalls he has become a better person and parent by responding to Billy's condition.

Keywords: baby-sitting; frustration; guilt; relationship; stress

01:07:01 - Concluding thoughts about autism

Play segment

Partial Transcript: From the information you gave us beforehand...

Segment Synopsis: Bowen gives a description of Billy's academic tendencies, particularly focusing on Billy's competitive attitude towards class rankings. Bowen then concludes the interview by restating that autism is a condition, and that it does not define a person.

Keywords: Asperger's; autism; competition; education; handicap; school assignments