Not quite a Valentine poem!


The Incident

Ring ring goes the phone

Number I note and voice so distinct

Mrs. Young, oh good you are home

Heavy heart, deep sigh

Chin drops to the chest

Not again, with exasperated cry


The common line that I dread

There’s been an incident

That bloody line rings in my head

There’s one thing for sure

It will be written on my gravestone

When I am no more


I listen to the chaos unfold

The triggers always unknown

A sudden chill makes me go cold

Coping mechanisms none were in sight

He struggled, he swore

Frustration, fear, fight and flight


The incident told with detailed description

Honesty yet delicate in her delivery

Underlined with such great precision

I hold the phone ever tighter

Pursed lips, eyes closed

Will his life ever get brighter?


Her reassurance that, ‘This too shall pass’

Don’t worry, calm has now resumed

And he’s happy again, back in his class.

However a report she now needs to make

It’s the same process for all

It’s purely for Health and Safety sake.


Not as many incidents so far this year

They say, he’s doing quite well

But there will be more yet I fear.

Ring ring goes the phone

The number I note

But this time I hide, there’s no-body at home!


Why did my PDA son have to fail in five schools before I was listened to?


This post is with our huge thanks to:
Special Needs Jungle –
for their continued support in raising the profile of Pathological Demand Avoidance Syndrome.

Why did my PDA son have to fail in five schools before I was listened to?

#PDA Awareness Day- Sunday 15th May 2016


PDA Awareness Day is Sunday 15th May (thats this weekend:-)

As its National Limerick Day today I thought Id make up a little limerick for Sunday… If you like it, please feel free to share especially on PDA Sunday x

Autism they said is like Rainman
PDA they said is naughty kid syndrome
They have closed minds bound by fear
and would rather we all just disappear.

Judgemental faces they simply cannot relate
Instructing us to medicate & sedate
They really don’t want to understand
Nor will they ever try to lend a hand.

Don’t look down on us with expression so glum
We simply march to the beat of our own drum
My last point for your personal reflection
is wake up people, we are all on the spectrum!

The trouble with grouping conditions under one umbrella …


Consideration relating to this article – 

Diagnostic labels are either accepted as a signpost; giving a fuller explanation of child or adult condition/behaviours/symptoms/additional physical or medical needs, sometimes necessary in order to be able to apply for a statement to gain additional support in mainstream schools, to access special schools or assistance in the community; OR labels seem to trigger negative feedback from those who lack understanding, misguided information, hostility, discrimination in the form of stereotyping, for instance: Aspergers = Rainman/high intelligence/no eye contact OR PDA/PDD-NOS = Naughty child syndrome, strong minded OR Classic = Unable to communicate, lack of emotions. 

I have worked in main stream schools, some who have worked hard to strive for inclusion of all types of children with additional educational needs. Sometimes with a successful outcome, but more times I witnessed inclusion not working positively for not only the child, but impacting on other children in the classroom, stressed teachers, and further distress on the family when the school placement breaks down. 

Trouble with grouping the large spectrum of autism under the one umbrella, is that a child with a diagnosis of ASD may be completely different from another child with ASD and will require different strategies in order to meet their differing needs.

My concerns are, and I give an example of a teacher (from either mainsteam or special needs school) with two children in her class, one is a girl and one is a boy, both have a diagnosis of ASD. The teacher recognises some stereotypical signs in the boy which she decides is probably Aspergers, but the girl behaves very differently from the boy, and struggles to engage in class, is disruptive and appears very defiant, the teacher decides that this girl probably isn’t ASD (after-all she gives eye contact) – UNLESS the teacher has full training of ALL of the categories and sub-categories of autism, she will quite naturally make up her own mind as to who is really autistic and who is simply being naughty, regardless of the child’s diagnosis or requirements of statement.

Many teachers in mainstream schools have too many pressures already placed upon them, with high numbers of children per class, attaining good grades for Ofsted inspections /reports/paperwork/governments on-going changing of exam systems etc. It’s no wonder that so many schools are getting it wrong for so many children with additional needs (I AM NOT SAYING ALL SCHOOLS!)

It saddens me to say, “Without FULL understanding of the autistic spectrum, grouping ASD under one umbrella will cause further confusion and exclusion”.