What Worries You When Your Child Reaches a New Milestone?

Parents often ask with concern why when their child has made a gain of some kind in development do they seem to reverse in others? As an Autistic I can tell you that many times when reaching a new milestone, we may revert to a previous special interest or sensory seeking behaviour for comfort and reassurance. There's nothing wrong with that. What we tend to notice more is the regression Autistic's display if there has been a traumatic experience. But any progress is still a change even if it is good, so a step back in another area … [Read more...]

Are You and Your Autistic Child at Odds? There is a Better Way!

Picture this: You turn up to playgroup and your child won't enter the building. He flatly refuses to enter, cries and begs not to go in but is told firmly and repeatedly that he has to go in, if he doesn’t he is going home and will be ‘in trouble with nanny later.’ Feeling harassed because you need to go shopping and have only two hours to do it in after you drop off your child…the crying is annoying and you’ve already been through hell trying to get him dressed and now you can't even leave?! "Autism at its best!" you secretly think … [Read more...]

Autism and a Tale of Two Views on a Particularly No Good Day!

The parent’s view: It’s been one of those days! Your child won’t listen to a thing you say and refuses to get dressed screaming like a banshee when you try to put on their socks. You get up and offer breakfast realising too late you’ve run out of the cereal your child HAS to have, screaming starts your day and your mood goes down from there. You decide to take your little one out for some fresh air and then a half hour in the soft play area. The socks WILL not go on! You literally end up sobbing in frustration while your child sits next … [Read more...]

Experience the Comfort and Joy of Sensory Habits

I've many times given advice on sensory seeking behaviours in autistic children, how to aid them and why they may occur. While explaining that a child spinning for example, is seeking to feed their vestibular sense or that a child stamping their feet is gaining proprioceptive feedback from the pressure of their soles bouncing on the floor, I've never described how it feels. Tactile I'm going to attempt to describe how, from my perspective it feels to run my fingers through soft fleecy material and the emotions I feel when I do: It's … [Read more...]

How Home Schooling Saved My Son

I never considered home education. I thought to do it you had to be rich or have some sort of formal training. It wasn’t something that entered my mind. As far as I knew, your child had to start in nursery (or pre-school in the US) and then they had to start school. That was that. My youngest son changed all that. He took that mind set and smashed it apart. When my son started nursery, I noticed that he was developing differently than his peers. I'd never really noticed before since all my children are neurologically different, … [Read more...]

Autism and Coffee

‘Really Autism? You going to start before I even have a cup of coffee?’ Yes really. That was posted in an Autism ‘support’ group. I couldn't resist replying ‘Really Neurotypical? You need a coffee first?’ The poster replied asking why I was offended. I explained I am Autistic and I found the fact she referred to her son as autism not as his name hurtful. I give her respect for the fact she stepped over to my point of view and apologised. The fact is there are two types of autism Facebook groups: The parents groups and the … [Read more...]

To the Unrecognised…We Are One

As an autistic diagnosed with Aspergers a year and a half ago I remember how it felt to not have a diagnosis. I seemed to need that written affirmation as to who I was, and while I'm happy I have my diagnosis I often wonder if it would have made such a difference to me if the neurotypical psych in the office had  not recognised me as an autistic. If I had answered the tick list differently and given my history in a way not satisfactory to their requirements I would have ‘failed’ and been misdiagnosed. The worry I have is how people in … [Read more...]

The 5 Common Autism Myths and Misperceptions

Where to start? These are the 5 common autism myths and misperceptions I hear regularly: Autism Myth 1: You can't be autistic you are too social. Yes I can be, I am able to enjoy others company as many autistics can. We can enjoy social occasions like parties and cinema trips. I love concerts and the theatre. That does not mean however that I do not risk sensory overload in those places which happens frequently. It does not mean that I do not need to rest for up to eight hours after intense social reaction, I do. Autistics can be … [Read more...]

Autism and Visual Perception

Have you ever wondered why your child squints to look at things? Or tilts her head to an angle to look at something? If a visit to the optician has ruled out any visual problems then it is more likely to do with the way they are processing the information being taken through the eyes and transmitted to the brain. My daughter always has had a problem with things moving past her rapidly. In her pram she would squint and cry out, so much so that I got her little sunglasses. They gave her great relief and she wore them for car journeys too. … [Read more...]

Growing Up as a Rainbow Girl

I can remember running, the large black tire hit me from behind and took me down in one fell swoop. My nose stung and I cried, no one saw and I went and sat down on a brick wall. I knew my mother wasn't there. If I was quiet and didn't tell I would be left alone until the next time. I had learned that at age four, and the boy who then bullied me knew it too. I had one friend in nursery, a boy who never spoke. He would play only with me and had a Buck Rogers comic he carried everywhere. We would climb behind the confined space of the … [Read more...]