Challenges and worries
Kelly’s journey continues to evolve as she becomes older. Tina found that, whilst Kelly made improvements in one area, she sometimes digressed in another. When their funding was cut at age seven, it was a huge blow. Tina felt like she was always fighting for the next support. Sometimes she felt exhausted but she knew she had to keep going.
Social connections can be one of the most difficult aspects for children with autism. Kelly continues to find communicating with other children her age difficult, especially in large groups. This is a real worry for her mother Tina.
Finding a community
Tina found the best support has come from a Facebook group specifically for parents of girls with autism who are in mainstream education in her area. This was, and still is ,a safe haven. Tina was able to access and share information, real life experiences as well as engaging in relatable conversation. The group was much more helpful for Tina than some of the more general autism groups, as the other parents were in a similar situation.
One day at a time
Today, Tina focuses on taking each day as it comes. The best piece of advice she has is that was important to accept her child’s autism for what it is and how it presents that day. She no longer puts timelines on anything and stays in the present.
Tina has learnt that it is incredibly important for their whole family has to work together to support both children. The process has become easier over time as she now has many more tools and resources in her belt. However, there will be more to learn as her children move through different life stages.
This story has been reported as told, but names have been changed to respect confidentiality. We thank Tina and Kelly for letting us tell their story. If you would like to tell your story please contact us. We are looking to share stories to help other parents understand more about the journey from concerns to diagnosis and beyond.