Posted in Reference

Who’s who

Imagine a young boy at school being ridiculed by his peers because he doesn’t understand the thing they are being taught, they taunt him and call him Dumbo.
Imagine this child is real and he has autism.

Now imagine that child has grown up…
What kind of man do you see?

Now imagine a young girl who doesn’t sleep due to insomnia, professionals have urged her parents to have her institutionalised.
This girl also has autism.

Now imagine her grown up, now you know who the boy was is your guess more accurate? Who do you see?

If you’ve met one person with autism, you’ve met one person with autism.

Dr. Stephen Shore


Autism is not one disorder, but a spectrum of disorders. All of which share symptoms but no individual on the spectrum has the same traits as another. I used to think autism was one thing but there arte so many things in the autism spectrum which I am guessing is the point. You are classed as autistic if you have any of these disorders. PDA (Click here to read more about this), Childhood Disintegrative Disorder, Pervasive Development Disorder, Asperger’s and then just Autism itself… People who had Rett Syndrome used to be classed as Autistic but as that was discovered to be caused by a mutation it has not been declassified from the spectrum.

Lets take Susan Boyle for example. Her debut album (despite the poorly chosen hashtag #Susanalbumparty) became the best selling album of all time. She is also the third person ever to reach n°1 in the UK & US charts twice in the same year.
She has sold over 19 million albums; that makes her album platinum! She has a net worth of over 20 million. These are amazing achievements for someone who found fame on a talent show especially since she didn’t come in first place.
Susan is an amazingly talented lady who happens to have autism.

Have you heard of Satoshi Tajiri? I will forgive you if not because you are probably not a massive nerd like me.
Well Mr Tajiri created Pokemon. As a child he loved collecting bugs but as his town became more urban it proved difficult. His idea behind Pokemon was so children could experience the excitement he had when catching and collecting creatures. Pokemon has been on the go now for almost 25 years and continues to spawn games, cards and movies. Satoshi has a net worth of over 10 million and is often referred to as a genius.
Personally I feel his greatest achievement is Pokemon Go which has helped many children and adults both on and off the spectrum become more sociable and explore the world around them.
Satoshi himself also happens to have Autism.

Some of the most iconic movies of all time have been directed, produced, animated or written by this guy. This is Tim Burton.
He brings us wonderful stories about outcasts, about wanting more, overcoming obstacles and beating the bullies.
Tim worked for the institution that is Disney and was fired because his ideas were dark and in his own words his ‘animations looked like road kill’
In his vast career he has received an Emmy, a Golden globe and many other awards. He has a net worth of over 130 million but his greatest achievement is his family.
Burton also has autism.

I’m guessing you have noticed a theme here…
As frightening as your child having Autism may be it does not necessarily mean they will not be successful as adults. There are hundreds and thousands of people of there with ASD, in fact over 700,000 people in the UK have been diagnosed that’s 1 in every 100 people. Think of everyone you know or have met… it is more than likely you have met someone with Autism. Maybe that person is William? but if it’s not, This is William.

His greatest achievement to us so far is eating bread, independently walking almost 1 mile and climbing the stairs as if someone is chasing him. 🙈
We don’t know what his future holds and how far he will develop but the possibilities are endless. Sometimes its hard for us as his parents to think positively but we must remember to celebrate his achievements no matter how small they seem in comparison to other children his age.
William is extraordinary and continues to surprise us every day.

Posted in Reference

Welcome to… Holland

By Emily Perl Kingsley, 1987.  All rights reserved.

I am often asked to describe the experience of raising a child with a disability – to try to help people who have not shared that unique experience to understand it, to imagine how it would feel. It’s like this……

When you’re going to have a baby, it’s like planning a fabulous vacation trip – to Italy. You buy a bunch of guide books and make your wonderful plans. The Coliseum. The Michelangelo David. The gondolas in Venice. You may learn some handy phrases in Italian. It’s all very exciting.

After months of eager anticipation, the day finally arrives. You pack your bags and off you go. Several hours later, the plane lands. The stewardess comes in and says, “Welcome to Holland.”

“Holland?!?” you say. “What do you mean Holland?? I signed up for Italy! I’m supposed to be in Italy. All my life I’ve dreamed of going to Italy.”

But there’s been a change in the flight plan. They’ve landed in Holland and there you must stay.

The important thing is that they haven’t taken you to a horrible, disgusting, filthy place, full of pestilence, famine and disease. It’s just a different place.

So you must go out and buy new guide books. And you must learn a whole new language. And you will meet a whole new group of people you would never have met.

It’s just a different place. It’s slower-paced than Italy, less flashy than Italy. But after you’ve been there for a while and you catch your breath, you look around…. and you begin to notice that Holland has windmills….and Holland has tulips. Holland even has Rembrandts.

But everyone you know is busy coming and going from Italy… and they’re all bragging about what a wonderful time they had there. And for the rest of your life, you will say “Yes, that’s where I was supposed to go. That’s what I had planned.”

And the pain of that will never, ever, ever, ever go away…because the loss of that dream is a very very significant loss. But…if you spend your life mourning the fact that you didn’t get to Italy, you may never be free to enjoy the very special, the very lovely things … about Holland.