11th April 2022
This Autism Awareness Month, Ryan tells us his story of living with autism in the hope that his experience might help others in similar situations.
“My difficulties started before I was even born! My mum has a negative blood group and the one medication designed to help failed for my mum the 2nd time round when she was pregnant with me.
When I was born I was poorly initially but with the help of the Drs all seemed fine. The first signs of autism were when I was developing slower than expected, and after various visits to specialists their opinion was I would develop at my own pace. It was when I went to pre-school that issues re behaviour and emotions were evident. I knew I was happy at home and my mum and dad helped me, but I had speech therapy and special transition into infant school. Again, problems arose with me adapting to school routines, teachers’ expectations and friendships. My mum asked if anything was wrong and she got an educational psychologist in to assess me – she in my mum’s words made a lovely booklet about me but we never saw her again and despite asking for more help, I apparently was lost in the system when I moved to junior schools. I had lots of interventions and well-meaning teachers/ plans/ social stories/ extra class support / mini groups/counselling but nothing was working. I had friends, but they didn’t last long as my behaviour was worsening and I was becoming more aggressive and upset.
The lowest point was when I was at senior school and at the hands of bullies; I had no support and I tried to end my own life. It was then that the GPs jumped into action. I was diagnosed at 13 and my life turned around. I then had various diagnoses of autism, sensory processing and dyslexia and had support initially. School life turned around with the help of an ECHP (Education Health and Care Plan) but it’s still been very hard. I feel I have had to work twice as hard at times for everything and it’s so tiring to make yourself understood.
Whatever people say to you, stick with what you want to do then stick with it and don’t let people tell you otherwise. I am in a much better place now and the future is more positive. After I am going to be doing a football course and wanting a happy life.“
If you, or someone you know, need support, No Limits is here to help. Our friendly Youth Workers are on hand to help you on your journey to getting the support that’s right for you. Get in touch today.