"The autism dropped us to our knees in a way that made us very real and connected to a community that we didn't know that we would be connected with," Holly says in an exclusive sneak peek at Saturday's Oprah: Where Are They Now?.
Her husband, 49, adds that their son RJ, now 18, "taught everybody patience."
"He's taught everybody tolerance. I think he's taught everybody love and respect, and that's what every one of our kids has," says the father of four.
The Peete family is poised to debut their new series For Peete's Sake, which shows their children coming into adulthood.
"You get to see through RJ's journey, something I've never seen, which is just him finding his way into the world," says Holly, 51.
Oprah: Where Are they Now? airs Saturdays (10 p.m. ET) and For Peete's Sake premieres March 19 at 9 p.m. ET, both on OWN.