Fetal alcohol syndrome is still stigmatized
Akila Clark, far right, with parents, Barb and Michael, and siblings, from the left, Imani, Zeke and Hezekiah.
When Barb and Michael Clark adopted their oldest daughter, Akila, at 5 months old, they never envisioned the difficult road ahead. The Minneapolis couple couldn’t see the brain damage caused by prenatal exposure to alcohol, but it didn’t take them long to realize something was wrong.
“As soon as she was walking and talking I knew things were a little off,” Barb Clark said. “Consequences never worked for her, and she was 2 years old when she stole for the first time.”
Finally, Clark began researching some of the behaviors online and found sites about Fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD). Finally, at age 6, Akila was diagnosed with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome.