How Pokémon Go gave a boy with autism a miraculous transformation

The game changed everything.

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  • With the various car crashes and injuries (not to mention the obsessive teenagers walking around your backyard around 3 a.m.), it is hard to see what benefits Pokémon Go really has to offer.

  • However, one mother of a 6-year-old boy with autism would beg to differ. Lenore Koppelman has seen her son Ralphie become a new boy thanks to the game.

  • Ralph's Eugene Levy impression! #ralphthelonious #lenorekoppelman #grouchomarx #eugenelevy #partycity #astoriaqueens #nyckids #nyc

    A photo posted by Lenore Koppelman (@the_cheeky_chipmunk) on

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  • Ralphie Koppelman has autism spectrum disorder and hyperlexia. This has made social interactions with children his age very difficult. He had been known to scare children when they have asked him to play with them. But Pokémon Go changed everything.

  • Minutes after downloading the game, his parents were shocked. He was smiling, laughing and even high-fiving kids he had never met.

  • "I would call it Ralph's first taste of what it's like to have something in common with the rest of the world," Lenore told

  • TODAY.

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  • On the first night he played, Ralphie worked with a girl who was searching for Pokémon at a bakery. Later, he looked a boy in the eye and smiled at him. But what happened after both instances is even more of a miracle.

  • Ralphie likes to stick to his usual routine, so when he was asked to go to the park where other kids were searching for more Pokémon, Lenore was positive he would not tag along.

  • Despite her belief, Ralphie and his new friend ran off together without thinking twice.

  • "He was suddenly part of this group that was all catching Pokémon together," Ralphie's mom said. As she was overcome with emotion, she cried behind the slide. Seeing young children welcome Ralphie with open arms was indescribable.

  • He broke out of his shell and became a new boy.

  • On July 12 she shared her excitement on Facebook saying, "MY AUTISTIC CHILD IS SOCIALIZING. Talking to people. Smiling at people. Verbalizing. Participating in pragmatic speech. With total strangers. Looking up at them. Sometimes even in the eye. Laughing with them."

  • Many other families with children with autism saw her post and shared that they were experiencing the same phenomenon.

  • A simple gaming app has done wonders for not just one child but multiple children with autism.

  • Who's to say smart phones don't have healing powers?

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Tana is a student with a passion for words. She believes that written words can touch people in ways unimaginable. In her spare time she enjoys singing, hiking, cuddling in a fuzzy blanket, and spending time with her friends and family.

Website: https://tanabolinger.wordpress.com/2015/04/21/2/

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