Without you, I would have given up. You're an angel, Betty.
Truly, I feel like we owe you a million bucks at this point :) If I had a million dollars to give away, you'd be first in line.
I can't say it enough- thank you!
Thanks to you and all your help and inspiration, our son is now living in his own townhouse with his caregiver.
It is amazing.
It has been quite a journey with lots of twists and turns, but we finally arrived at day 1 of the rest of his and our lives.
So far our days have been wonderful even though it has only been 5 days.
Thank you again because we could not have done it without all of your help.
You’re a champ! Thank you! Ben Warren
Thank you Betty for all your support. I am forever indebted to you. Kim Sandman
Thank you so much. You really are the best support ever. We don't know what we would do without your help. Kathy Stortz
Thank you so much for your insight. I was thinking about you the other day and how you should hire someone to work with you so they can start learning all your vast amounts of info. When you retire, the state and parents will be at a tremendous loss!!! Kristina Tober
I thank you for all of your support and sharing your knowledge with me. You are an incredible woman and I have the utmost respect for you and thank you for paving such a beautiful path for all of us who must follow in your steps.
Take care of yourself and I hope our paths cross again!
Lorraine Mollohan Quiroga
Parent and Grandparent
I wanted to thank you for the awesome presentation. It was a very real eye-opener to learn that we, as parents, have a lot of options for our special needs children.
So grateful for all paperwork you so generously put together.
Thank you again for the time you gave to help us. And, after looking through all the pages again, we have an abounding appreciation for your knowledge and hard work. You are amazing! Cathy Davis
“Thank you, Betty, very much!! For the email packed with valuable information and resources.
Thank you for your time and dedication.”
Thanks for following up and for the important work you do. Bob Barnstable
Thank you for your guidance!! So appreciative and grateful for it! Erin Ficken
Thanks Betty. I am forever grateful to have you as an advocate on our behalf. Ali Hayes
Thank you, Betty, for being our advocate. We appreciate all the wisdom you have imparted and the ability to work with you moving forward. Jeff DePasse
Thanks for all your help. You have been an invaluable source of information. The best thing my friend with a disabled child ever said to me was: "Go see Betty." Kathy Gibbons
Thanks so much, Betty, for connections and for the excellent info you sent me - we are VERY excited to be working with you! This is the most empowered I've felt since we transitioned into adult services - SO GRATEFUL for that feeling! Thanks again~
Kathy Miner Anders
“Thanks again, this is incredibly helpful--an email to you got us more information than over a year asking our CCB waiver coordinator the same questions!” Dr. Catherine McIlhany
Thank you for your continual support. I can’t image where we would be without it. Libby Alvarez
I want to extend my deep gratitude for your guidance during this process. Today, I woke knowing we still have a great deal of work to do but I feel that the last, greatest hurdle in raising my son has been crossed. I’ve been advocating and battling for him since he entered the school system. Since birth, really. The anxiety and distress when thinking of his future has dissipated.
I can breathe again.
God bless you. Mayre Lynn Schmit
It was a pleasure spending time with you and getting started on the planning for our daughter. I can see we have a lot to do and am glad we have you in our corner as we navigate the potentially precarious and certainly bewildering path required to insure the necessary assistance and services for our daughter to make her future more secure. Tom Kathan
I am truly grateful for you and all that you do. My stress level has gone down knowing there is an advocate for us. Thank you for leading us in the right direction and continuing to help. Rana and Samer Alsaleem
"Thank you so much for all this information and your incredible dedication and determination to guide us through this process. It is somewhat overwhelming but I am confident thanks to your guidance we can get on top of all of it and have good outcomes/options for our son.
We are so glad we connected & have you in our lives.
Many thanks! You are a ROCK STAR in our community (I hope you know that!)"
We certainly know we can contact you if we have questions as we go forward. We have always appreciated that so much and your wealth of knowledge is unparalleled. Debra Lovell
Lesson learned for me - I have to have things set up so strictly when I'm gone. I really see the need for detailed instructions on what he needs. He is doing so well that I think I can relax a little, and in truth, I can somewhat, but he still needs so much structure. I'm a sleuth; I can usually decipher what it is he is missing, but not everyone around him has that passion.
So, in other words, the LOI aids making me write down on paper everything that is in my head.
Betty, THANKS again :)
You are an absolute BEACON OF CLARITY in an otherwise frustrating, terrifying, lonely and administrivia-filled world! I am so grateful for all you've done and do for our loved ones and us!
Your LOI outline is very helpful and I believe that our son will be well cared for when my husband and I are gone. I really value your counsel on preparing for the SIS questions and SSI application. Having your counsel gave us confidence in representing our sons needs well. I am grateful to have you on our team. We will always be grateful. Michaelann Martin
The LOI provided a much needed overview and detailed information for our future planning purposes for our son. To have all the documentation in one place was much better than filing through my 3-ring binders for necessary information. I have much more confidence and security in our son’s future after completing the LOI. The support from you is always beneficial and so grateful for your wisdom and knowledge. I have already recommended this experience to a friend and will continue to do so as the need arises. Thank you again for all you do!! Amber Hempell
The Letter of Intent is a brilliant plan for anyone with a special needs person in their care. This is as critical of a component as any other life plan that you put in place. We are extremely grateful to Betty for creating this safeguard for our children when something happens to us. I would strongly encourage everyone to take the time to complete this and update it as your child grows.
Thank you Betty!!!! Kari and Matt Ansay
“You have always been such a great help to my family, and I just wanted to express my appreciation.” Julie O'Neil
I was just thinking about Thanksgiving, and all the things I have to be thankful for. One of them is meeting you.
You have helped us so much.
Betty sat with us and explained to us the road map we need to consider to begin the process of planning for the future of our son. My wife and I thought to ourselves how do we plan when the immediate situation of our son's therapies and IEP and so many other urgent priorities clashed with our ability to take a long term view of things.
...Today as I write this note of gratitude in November 2016 to Betty Lehman I am so glad we have a plan for our family and our most precious belonging in this family world, our son. As the major breadwinner of my family I feel secure that no matter what happens to us our son is in safe hands because we have a comprehensive plan that covers his medical care, education, financial security, social safety net of family to care for him after us... Preveen Ramamoorthy, Ph.D
Organization of Rare Diseases
"Thanks so much for all of your time today. I am sure you hear this a lot and you certainly understand and live it but this process will give us so much peace of mind and enable us as parents to hopefully sleep a little better at night…..
We look forward to working with you and thank you again for all of your candor and grace in our conversation."
Thank you for your hard work in putting this Letter of Intent together. Many families will benefit from your labors.
Thank you for getting back to us so quickly. We appreciate your great service!
As always, your services are greatly appreciated.
I went to a presentation by Betty Lehman and Melissa Edelman and learned so much and I am still learning.
My mother was a special needs Mom also. My older brother had contracted meningitis at only 3.5 months old. My mother said that when he stopped turning towards light and sound, she knew that there was permanent damage. My brother ended up being severely disabled both mentally and physically.
My mother always said that she wanted to live exactly one day longer than my brother so that she would always be there to take care of him. I have heard other special needs Moms say this exact same sentence also. Thinking like this assumes that until our dying day we will be able to take care of our special needs children, which is not realistic.
In her old age, my mother cannot even take care of herself. If my brother were still alive, my mother would not be able to take care of him. My beautiful brother died at the age of 27 after a seizure.
I am planning on my beautiful daughter with autism outliving me by many decades so I need to plan for a wonderful future for her starting now. The earlier I start, the better I can be prepared.
I am very thankful that Betty Lehman, who is one of our P2P members, is someone who has paved the way for us. I have already benefited from her pioneering efforts in pushing for the necessary benefits and Medicaid waivers for our children. The health insurance that my employer provides covers ABA therapies and so does the CES waiver that my daughter is on.
Thank you for being that ever watchful eye :)
“I truly appreciate your exceptional service!” Marcella Roberts
I would like to take this time to thank you for your invaluable help getting our grandson the CES waiver. Your expertise in maneuvering the maze of public assistance was so helpful and I am sure the outcome would have been different without your help…You are making a real difference in people’s lives. Tom Ladtkow
Completing the Letter of Intent with the help of Betty Lehman has given us enormous peace of mind. Our daughter is mostly non-verbal and unable to communicate, so it is vital to have everything fully prepared in case someone needs to step into our shoes. This is something that we knew needed to be done and had attempted to do on our own in the past. We did manage to record the logistics of everyday life, so that a short-term sitter could come in and manage the schedule and the routine at short notice. However, we never knew quite how to capture who we are and what we truly want for our precious daughter. Despite my huge binder of information, we always needed to spend time working side by side with even familiar family caregivers before we felt comfortable leaving her. And even then, there was just so much left unsaid. Our daughter's health history is extensive and extremely complicated, so we have never left her for a long period and we always just sort of hoped that no health needs would need to be addressed while we were away. We honestly just couldn't fathom the possibility of leaving her suddenly, without the opportunity to catch potential guardians up to speed. However, meeting with Betty inspired us to delve deeper into the planning process. Knowing that she had a similar situation with her son made it seem achievable. Her Letter of Intent format helped us fill in the many holes in our plans and gave us a road map of everything that needed to be considered. Because Betty spent so much time getting to know us, she was also able to suggest services from which our daughter could benefit and put us in touch with trusted contacts who could help us prepare confidently for the future. This process was certainly time consuming, but it was worth every minute. I am so thankful for the inspiration, guidance, and support during this process and I would highly recommend it to other special needs families. Amy Warren
“With your guidance and some prep, we got our daughter to her true SIS level. In my opinion, this alone is already worth it for deciding to work with you.” Bennett Parnes M.D.
There was overwhelming positive feedback about your presentations every week. The only negative was actually a positive, in that they wished it was longer. Thank you so much for all your support of our parents and our organization. You truly are a treasure! Kim Kelleher, MA-SLP, MA-Ed
Therapy Program Manager
It was so great to meet with you and Melissa - this is the missing piece we have been searching for. It is a great relief for us to have a resource like you - someone that not only understands and lives all this, but someone who knows the answers, or knows how to get the answers. Thank you for all the important work you do to help families like ours. Jane Bloise
Parent / Mental Health Professional
When you and Melissa presented your program, it was an awakening. Wow! Someone was working on the very same issue we were dealing with. A bit of light shone on me. After so many years of feeling my way through the dark on my own… I have so often thought of you and how you helped our daughter and our family to the place where we are today. And I think of the road behind us. Our family is closer than it has ever been. An enormous weight has been lifted from my shoulders. And you are the person most valuable of all. I thank you so much. Susan Whittlesey
You have been a delight to work with and my family is grateful for your tireless input. Knowing you has made us rich in information. The Return on Investment cannot be tallied and our daughter is insured a better life because of you. We cannot thank you enough!!! Jim Lynch
Your enthusiasm and grace nursed me along in this journey more than any one program or opportunity I have ever come across. I am forever grateful. Diana Dargen
I am always a bit worried about the lack of planning. We did a survey with families of students age 14-21 and only 6 percent had even thought about the future never mind planned for it. Planning opens so many cans of worms but getting help to plan makes it much less scary. Ailsa Wonnecott
You guys ROCK! Part of the reason I am more stable is because you have 1) helped clarify the issues, resources, and options, and 2) provided foundation for my husband and I to communicate more clearly with common goals and shared understanding of issue and concerns. Both are HUGE! Thanks again! Kelly Stahlman
We would like to thank you once again for providing the important information we were so desperately needing. You have all been so friendly and informative. We feel you truly have our daughter's and our best interests in mind. Kerrie Birnie
Betty, please allow me to also express my admiration and gratitude to you for all you do to assist the families that are raising and supporting their child with autism. You are an inspiration to us all. Sharon Hurst
Exceptional Student Services, Director
Aurora Public Schools
Betty supports every non-profit and state agency that supports people with developmental disabilities, whether by letters of support, working together on grants, developing legislation, being a spokesperson, or brainstorming solutions. She is fiercely determined to make a difference. Those that know her want to know how she can keep producing results with the same passion and energy she has always demonstrated. Betty tells us her inspiration is her son, Eli.
Betty is truly a visionary leader for Colorado, an exceptional person and parent, and Colorado citizens and non-profits will continue to benefit from her passionate leadership. Betty believes in possibilities and has made a difference in thousands of lives. Carol Meredith
The ARC of Arapahoe and Douglas Counties
Every time I feel overwhelmed by this process, I not only rely on my faith but I also say a prayer for you and your son Eli. I'm so thankful that strong people like you have blazed a trail in Colorado for people like me and my family! Christina Meisel
Everywhere we turn you are there fighting for kids like Matty, and I don’t know where we would be without people like you. Darick W. LaSelle
You have been an inspiration to me. I would not be on the path I'm on today for my daughter and myself if not for your guidance and expertise. I am so grateful that our paths crossed. With heartfelt thanks, Kathy Ellison