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Declan Lynch: Am I glad my son is autistic?

Father and son by Arvind Balaraman

Last week, Declan talked about coming to terms with diagnosis, from the point of view of a father of a son with Autism, in this second installment, he discusses getting support and realising the positives.

When I first began  to learn about autism, I took the route I’d been programmed to take since my first day at school, ‘Ask the Experts’, a tried and trusted way of garnering information since the first cave man invented ‘show and tell’ on the back wall of his mountainside holiday home. Nothing wrong with my methodology, my mistake however was my choice of experts. Therapists, Clinicians, Professionals of every hue seemed to espouse their opinions on how to help my child and people like him to ‘Make the Journey to our World’ as it was often put. What I didn’t realize for such a long time was that the greatest living expert on how to help my little boy was living under my own roof and was sending communications directly to me every minute of every day.

My very own, wonderful, perfectly ‘normal’, autistic son. My astonishing ability to remain blind to his messages for so long is my failing, not his. A testament perhaps to the bizarre mixture of arrogance and ignorance displayed by so many of us as we seek to prove our worth by providing all the answers. Science for sure does have a role to play in helping us all understand how our bodies work. It now allows us to see into the human brain and to understand to some degree what’s going on there. It can help explain why certain sensitivities may be heightened or lessened and what stimuli might be factors. Why communications can be difficult in certain situations and even why the some of us process information differently to others.

Many experts across the range of disciplines have huge contributions to make in helping us find the best ways for people regardless of their neurology to live and enjoy their lives.  They can show how a given strategy or theory should work and crucially have evidence of its success. Not just anecdotal evidence but hard facts, scientifically tested and proven evidence that what they offer is of real benefit to the recipient. Too often the benefits of a given strategy are benefits to the provider, from the ‘Miracles for Sale’ type of interventions to the ‘It’s what we do’ variety. The latter being often the attitude taken by state funded providers. For what it’s worth, I’ve found the best approach is to research the options, assess the evidence and then question, question, question. Doesn’t win many popularity contests, especially as it happens from ‘Professional Educators’, but does shine a light on the merit or otherwise of any specific approach. Technology too, has a huge role to play, from tablets/smart phones and the myriad of apps that can be employed for virtually any requirement to the most powerful and yet fundamental advance of recent times – global communications. Everybody can now pretty much talk to everybody. What an amazing tool. What my caveman ancestor would have given for that.

An enormously beneficial result of this has been the emergence in recent times of autistic people who suddenly have the means to communicate on a wide scale.  Wonderfully intelligent, able and generous people who live with ASD and experience the challenges and benefits that it can bring every day. People who can now express and share their knowledge and experiences on a wide scale. These are the true experts, they always have been, in the past they didn’t have the means to reach out and help and if truth be told, their voice would probably not have been listened to by those ‘who always know better’. Today they do have the means to reach out and the impact is enormous and growing exponentially. As individuals and families benefit from their assistance, they in turn find themselves in a position to help others. No generation of autistic people in history have had the opportunity presented to those who live today – advocates with ASD who can speak from direct experience and can reach across continents. To all those amazing people who work so hard and share their experience so that others may benefit, the true heroes of my world I say most sincerely, thank you and Godspeed to your efforts. I’ve lived through the years of the Autistic Winter, it was cold there, now perhaps the Autistic Spring is about to blossom

I still worry about the future, it’s what I do, part of any parent’s job. But I don’t worry as much. Do I wish life was different, more ‘normal’? Do I wish my son’s childhood was easier, more like the one I experienced? In so many ways the answer is an emphatic yes. There’s a certain safety to be found in the middle of the herd. It’s easier being like everybody else, nowhere near as interesting but easier. I want my son to have a happy life. I want to someday close my eyes and know that he’s safe and established as a fully independent member of society. In truth, that would be more likely were he not autistic. I know my last cogent thought, whenever that might be, will be for his welfare and that worries me. But I know too that he’s better equipped to face life now than he was even a short time ago. I know he’s developing and maturing at his own pace, just as he should. His life is made easier by those who pave the way, those who educate the bulk of the population about how society can be made so much fairer for everybody without that much effort, simply by changing attitudes and mindsets. His life will be made easier when we learn to value and respect people simply for what they are, not for some standard template we decide people should adhere to.

Am I glad my son is autistic?  I love my son unconditionally, I love everything about him and autism is part of what makes him who he is. So I guess I love that too. That’s quite a journey from a cold October day in St. Frances clinic Temple St. when I first heard the words ‘These results place your child on the Autistic Spectrum’

Also Check Out:

Declan Lynch: “These results place your son on the Autistic Spectrum”

by - 8 September, 2014

Last updated by - September 8, 2014

in Autism Hub, Blog, Declan Lynch, Featured News, Parenting

Can this be improved? Contact webeditor@asiam.ie if you have any suggestions for this article.
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by - 5 April, 2017

AsIAm is pleased to announce that we have an opening on our team for the position of Information ...[...]

SURVEY: Missing out on school? Have your say!

by - 3 April, 2017

It's World Autism Awareness Month and our opportunity to shine a light on issues affecting our co...[...]

Join Team AsIAm

by - 28 March, 2017


Top Tips for a Successful St. Patrick’s Day

by - 17 March, 2017

Well excitement will have been building, in schools across Ireland, over the past week for the an...[...]

BLOG: Hello from the other side

by - 10 March, 2017

Trish Flood, a mum to two boys on the Autism Spectrum and a super advocate for the Autism Communi...[...]

Stepping off the treadmill: Getting a Diagnosis as an Adult

by - 10 March, 2017

A blog by Brian Irwin,  AsIAm Volunteer & Secondary School Speaker in the Cork Region [captio...[...]

Autism & Me Documentary – Monday 13th March, 9:35pm on RTE One

by - 8 March, 2017

We are very exciting for the release of a new RTE One Documentary, produced by Firebrand Producti...[...]

Step into the shoes of someone with Autism – FREE Autism Experience Exhibition to visit Tallaght Stadium

by - 7 January, 2017

We are very excited for the AsIAm “Autism Experience” Exhibition to visit Tallaght Stadium on Thu...[...]

SURVEY: Demand for 2nd Level Autism Class in D2, D4, D6/6W

by - 15 December, 2016

 For many children on the Autism Spectrum, the transition to mainstream Secondary School represen...[...]

The Autism Experience Exhibition is coming to Portlaoise!

by - 22 November, 2016

We are very excited for the AsIAm “Autism Experience” Exhibition to visit the Portlaoise Heritage...[...]

Bring your school/youth club – Autism Experience Exhibition to visit Ennis

by - 10 October, 2016

We are so excited to be bringing our YouthHub "Autism Experience" Exhibition to the Temple Gate H...[...]

AsIAm “The Autism Experience” Exhibition to visit Ennis

by - 8 October, 2016

We are very excited to announce the AsIAm "Autism Experience" Exhibition will visit the Temple Ga...[...]

NEW SERIES – “AutismQs” – Your Questions, Answered

by - 9 September, 2016

During the month of September, AsIAm is excited to be bringing you a whole range of new content, ...[...]

VIDEO: AsIAm Says Hi – What supports are available to students with Autism?

by - 8 September, 2016

There is so many different people and organisations doing great things to support people with Aut...[...]

VIDEO: Autism – Emily’s perspective as a sibling

by - 6 September, 2016

We recently came across this extraordinary video on YouTube. The video features the sibling of a ...[...]

NEW: Adam’s Video Blog

by - 1 September, 2016

Hey everyone! Since Day 1, I have tried to keep everyone posted on our work via a regular blog. I...[...]

Community Voice: Our September Wishlist

by - 1 September, 2016

AsIAm is all about the voice of the Autism community. We love nothing more than receiving content...[...]


by - 1 September, 2016

We are excited to announce a new monthly competition on AsIAm.ie! Every month we will ask users t...[...]

Top Tips: Supporting a son/daughter making the move to 3rd Level

by - 29 August, 2016

Watching a son or daughter make the move to college can be nerve-wracking and emotional for any p...[...]

Top Tips for a Successful First Year in College

by - 29 August, 2016

The Leaving Cert Results are in, the offers have been made and the summer is drawing rapidly to a...[...]

Fantastic, FREE Autism Training for Parents & Teachers

by - 18 August, 2016

We frequently receive enquiries from parents and teachers in relation enquiring about training op...[...]

AsIAm 100km Cycle – A great success!

by - 9 June, 2016

The Inaugural AsIAm 100km Cycle took place on Saturday 28th May, starting in the Killiney Castle ...[...]

Support Our Cyclists: Inaugural AsIAm 100km Fundraising Cycle

by - 20 May, 2016

It's nearly the 28th May and that can mean just one thing - the Inaugural AsIAm 100km Fundraising...[...]

Marathons (Mini & Large!) – Run, Walk or Crawl for AsIAm.ie

by - 30 January, 2016

The first day of Spring looms and so it is almost time to knock off the cobwebs and get back in s...[...]

Ireland’s first autism friendly university might be on the way…

by - 20 January, 2016

We were delighted to see coverage of our new project, with DCU and Specialisterne Ireland in to...[...]

Survey: What attitude do neurotypical young people have towards young people with Autism?

by - 11 January, 2016

AsIAm.ie is currently preparing a major national awareness campaign aimed at educating neurotypic...[...]

AsIAm National Autism Conference 2016 – “Empowering Potential”

by - 9 December, 2015

AsIAm is pleased to announce that we will host our Inaugural National Autism Conference, during...[...]

Public Meetings – AsIAm Youth Awareness Campaign

by - 25 November, 2015

Calling all young people with Autism & Family Members! As you probably know, AsIAm recently ...[...]

Adam’s Blog: On the Road – literally and metaphorically!

by - 29 October, 2015

The last few weeks have been insanely busy for us in AsIAm.ie, with the "Back to School" period s...[...]

Exciting News: AsIAm YOUth Panel & Autism Awareness Campaign

by - 23 October, 2015

AsIAm is delighted to announce that we have been awarded funding from the Department of Justice a...[...]

Survey: Proposed National Autism Conference

by - 24 September, 2015

AsIAm.ie is excited to announce that we will hold our Inaugural Conference in 2016! We hope thi...[...]

Yvonne Newbold: Top Tips for Parents at the start of the School Year

by - 8 September, 2015

Yvonne Newbold is a parent and advocate for those affected by Autism in the UK. Yvonne wrote a bo...[...]

Fionn Hamill: The Challenge of Change in a New School Year

by - 7 September, 2015

Our Friend and Frequent Blogger, Fionn Hamill, writes on the challenges of change in the new scho...[...]

Michael Ryan: Secondary School – Getting off to the right start

by - 1 September, 2015

Starting or returning to Secondary School can be a big change and a challenge for all students, h...[...]

Opportunity: Become an AsIAm School Speaker

by - 6 August, 2015

AsIAm.ie is spending August gearing up for our Secondary Schools Programme 2015/16 - which will s...[...]

Adam’s Blog: To educate children, we must educate parents too

by - 6 July, 2015

If you ever have the opportunity to discuss Autism with a young child I highly recommend it. I ha...[...]

#AskTheDentist – LIVE AT 8PM!

by - 22 June, 2015

  To go direct to the Q&A please click here AsIAm aims to provide you access to the be...[...]

Interview: Dina Andreucetti of Brasserie 7 on Autism-Friendly Sittings

by - 22 June, 2015

On the 31st March 2015, AsIAm launched its new initiative "AsYouCan", aimed at engaging civic soc...[...]

Adam’s Blog: When we talk to people, they are listening!

by - 15 June, 2015

Hey everyone, It's been a couple of weeks since I've written a blog, but we have made exciting p...[...]

Have your voice heard: Study on Irish Adults with Autism

by - 11 May, 2015

It is often said that there is a lack of services and awareness of the challenges adults with Asp...[...]

AsYouCan: Focus on Sports & Extra-Curricular Clubs

by - 22 April, 2015

As part of our “AsYouCan” Campaign, for World Autism Awareness Month, each day in April we will s...[...]

President Michael D. Higgins becomes Patron of AsIAm.ie

by - 22 April, 2015

AsIAm.ie is pleased to announce that the President of Ireland, Michael D. Higgins, has kindly agr...[...]

“AsYouCan”: Focus on Healthcare

by - 14 April, 2015

As part of our “AsYouCan” Campaign, for World Autism Awareness Month, each day in April we will s...[...]

Adam’s Blog: “AsYouCan” Campaign Update

by - 13 April, 2015

Good morning all! I am on a train to Roscommon, where we will today bring our Schools Programme t...[...]

“AsYouCan”: Focus on Public Transport

by - 10 April, 2015

As part of our “AsYouCan” Campaign, for World Autism Awareness Month, each day in April we will s...[...]

“AsYouCan”: Focus on Restaurants & Bars

by - 9 April, 2015

As part of our “AsYouCan” Campaign, for World Autism Awareness Month, each day in April we will...[...]

“AsYouCan”: Focus on Retail

by - 8 April, 2015

  As part of our "AsYouCan" Campaign, for World Autism Awareness Month, each day in April...[...]

AsYouCan Campaign – What can you do to be more Autism-Friendly?

by - 1 April, 2015

This World Autism Awareness Month, AsIAm is calling on every individual, organisation and sector ...[...]

Sean Foley: Retail and Aspergers Syndrome

by - 23 February, 2015

Sean Foley, a frequent blogger on this site, shares his experiences of retail, both sides of th...[...]

If society was to change in one small way, what should it do?

by - 13 February, 2015

We need you help! We are currently working on a campaign aimed at engaging various different sect...[...]

Julie Direen: Why I wouldn’t change my son one bit!

by - 12 February, 2015

Being a parent of a child with Autism can be challenging but, as Julie Direen shares, it can also...[...]

Sean Foley: A High-Functioning Airline?

by - 4 February, 2015

Sean Foley is a self-advocate, based in Co. Kerry. Sean frequently writes and speaks about his ex...[...]

Carrie Burton: Acceptance and Understanding is key

by - 2 February, 2015

[caption id="attachment_3318" align="alignleft" width="300"] Carrie, centre, at our recent "Back ...[...]

Fionn Hamill: How I learned to mix with people, P2

by - 30 January, 2015

In Part 2 of his awesome blog on learning to mix with other people, Fionn Hamill talks sports tea...[...]

Video: I am just like you

by - 29 January, 2015

We received this from a parent and we love the message - Autism is only one part of anyone! It's ...[...]

Fionn Hamill: How did I learn to mix with people?

by - 28 January, 2015

Fionn Hamill, a frequent blogger here and on his own blog, autisticandproud.wordpress.com, shares...[...]

Adam appears on “The Saturday Night Show”

by - 26 January, 2015

Our Founder, Adam Harris joined Brendan O'Connor on "The Saturday Night Show", last week , to dis...[...]

Adam’s Blog: How you can get involved & why we need YOU!

by - 24 January, 2015

I am sitting here preparing for "The Saturday Night Show", which I will be appearing on this even...[...]

Good News Monday: Joe Smidt visits the Terenure Tigers

by - 16 January, 2015

The Terenure Tigers are an inclusive Rugby team serving children, with a special need or needs, i...[...]

Full Coverage: Middletown Centre for Autism “Enabling Education” Conference

by - 8 January, 2015

The Middletown Centre for Autism recently held a super international conference entitled "Enablin...[...]

Grainne Lynch: The Year Ahead …

by - 6 January, 2015

Grainne Lynch is a business woman, nurse, Autism and advocate and parent of a son with Autism. Ch...[...]

AsIAm seeks cultural and legislative change to protect vulnerable people

by - 10 December, 2014

The online support and advocacy group for people with autism, AsIAm.ie, has said Ireland needs ...[...]

OPEN FOR ENQUIRIES: AsIAm Secondary School Workshop

by - 8 December, 2014

AsIAm.ie recently launched its first programme, which see trained volunteers visit Secondary Scho...[...]

Jonathan Victory: Aspergers Syndrome & Martial Arts

by - 5 December, 2014

Jonathan Victory shares his positive experiences of Martial Arts as someone with Aspergers Synd...[...]

HELP NEEDED: Putting Autism on the Map – AsIAm Mapping of Autism Services

by - 3 December, 2014

AsIAm.ie was founded to help to empower people and families affected by Autism, through arming th...[...]

Sensory Simulation: What is the supermarket like if you have Autism?

by - 27 November, 2014

Have you ever been in the Supermarket and seen a child "making a scene" or getting very agitated ...[...]

Good News & Public Meeting : Anthony Doolan & Carer’s Allowance

by - 25 November, 2014

Anthony Doolan is the Founder and Coordinator of the Kildare / West Dublin Autism Parents Support...[...]

AsIAm School Speakers – Coming to a Secondary School near you in 2015!

by - 24 November, 2014

AsIAm is delighted to announce that we will shortly begin accepting bookings from Secondary Schoo...[...]

Dolores Crowley: Let’s focus on the positives

by - 10 November, 2014

Dolores Crowley works for Financial Wellbing, advising parents of children with Special Needs abo...[...]

Adam’s Blog: Schools, Support Groups & the Summit

by - 10 November, 2014

It has been a crazy few weeks! I haven't had the chance to blog personally and update everyone on...[...]

Call-Out: AsIAm School Speakers Required!

by - 5 November, 2014

1 in 100 people now have Autism in Ireland, no student will go through life without meeting, livi...[...]

Autism Community – Events Diary: November

by - 4 November, 2014

AsIAm works hard to bring all the brilliant work and events around the country into one place for...[...]

Free Ebook: 30 Winning Tips for Better Meetings by Yvonne Newbold

by - 31 October, 2014

One stressful aspect of being a parent of a child on the Autism Spectrum is getting the right sup...[...]

Cheer Up Tuesday: One Young World – “Move to Include”

by - 21 October, 2014

We have been out there this morning and it is a cold, drab day out there! Need a cheer-up? Then, ...[...]

AUCTION: Calling all GAA & Golf Fanatics!

by - 16 October, 2014

On Halloween 2014, the Opening Training College is organising a fundraising coffee morning for 4 ...[...]

Bray Lions Club: “The Great Bray Table Quiz” in aid of AsIAm.ie!

by - 10 October, 2014

AsIAm.ie has always been lucky to enjoy the help and support of Bray Lions Club and the Lions Clu...[...]

SURVEY: Autism Spectrum Conditions and Employment

by - 8 October, 2014

AsIAm.ie is committed to addressing the social issues surrounding Autism. We have been aware for ...[...]

Lisa Domican: If I can’t talk, how can I tell you where it hurts?

by - 1 October, 2014

Lisa Domican, Founder of Grace App, talks about the challenge for parents in identifying pain in ...[...]

Being a young researcher in the field of Autism: How I got here and where I want to go.

by - 30 September, 2014

Niamh McDevitt is a PhD student in Trinity College Dublin, and a research in the field of Autis...[...]

Parents Guide: Birthday Parties

by - 29 September, 2014

Attending, and having, a Birthday party is an important part of growing up! For children with A...[...]

Alan Cuthbert: Setting up a Special Needs Bank Account

by - 26 September, 2014

Many of our parent users are interested and concerned about the financial and legal security of t...[...]

Dr. Rod Pitcher: Finding out I had Aspergers Syndrome…

by - 25 September, 2014

Dr. Rod Pitcher, PhD, shares his experiences growing up without knowing he had Aspergers Syndrome...[...]

HEA Consultation: How can we make Higher Education better for people with Autism?

by - 15 September, 2014

Do you have a condition on the Autism Spectrum? Have you a son/daughter with the condition? Are y...[...]

RTE News Six:One – AsIAm.ie “Back to School” Handbooks

by - 10 September, 2014

The challenges of "Back to School" for students with Autism, and the launch of the AsIAm.ie "Back...[...]

Adam’s Blog: Schools Programme Update

by - 9 September, 2014

It has been an exciting few weeks since my last blog, with the launch of our "Back to School" Han...[...]

Aspire Ireland Drama Classes

by - 4 September, 2014

There are limited places available on the highly successful Aspire Drama in Education Programme...[...]

Declan Lynch: “These results place your child on the Autistic Spectrum”

by - 2 September, 2014

Often fathers find it more difficult to come to terms with diagnosis, or are left out of the disc...[...]

Video: “Listen” – An insight into Autism

by - 28 August, 2014

We came across this video by designer / animator, Marisabel Fernandez. "Listen", tries to give an...[...]

“Back to School”: Buddy System

by - 28 August, 2014

Many parents at this time of the year will be concerned about their son / daughter being left beh...[...]

Looking for Inclusive Sport? Check out the Terenure Tigers!

by - 27 August, 2014

Yesterday we featured a blog from parent, Kenneth Whelan, about the benefits CoderDojo, as an ext...[...]

AUTISM EVENTS: Make use of the AsIAm Calender!

by - 27 August, 2014

AsIAm.ie is aiming to be the one-stop-shop of information on Autism in Ireland, in recent weeks w...[...]

Fionn Hamill: Back to School, are you ready?

by - 27 August, 2014

Back to School, are you ready? Here our regular blogger, Fionn Hamill, shares his answer and give...[...]

What do they do? – A Guide to the various education agencies / officers

by - 26 August, 2014

Back to School means back to an endless number of phone calls, letters and meetings, for many par...[...]

Parents Discussion: Ideas, Experiences and Concerns around “Back to School”

by - 25 August, 2014

Since our successful "Back to School" Handbooks launch last week, we have been delighted with the...[...]

Kenneth Whelan: “Why don’t you take Ethan to this CoderDojo thing?”

by - 25 August, 2014

Many families affected by Autism may be considering possible suitable extra-curricular activities...[...]

My Child / All About Me Handbooks: Every child with Autism is different

by - 24 August, 2014

There is an old adage: "If you know one person with Autism, you know one person with Autism" It ...[...]

Photo Gallery: AsIAm “Back to School” Media Launch

by - 23 August, 2014

We are delighted with the response we have received from our recent media launch of our "Back to ...[...]

Newstalk Breakfast: Vanessa Fox-O’Loughlin shares her story & AsIAm “Back to School” Handbooks

by - 22 August, 2014

Yesterday we were delighted to launch our AsIAm "Back to School" Handbooks for teachers, parents...[...]

Press Conference: AsIAm “Back to School” Handbooks

by - 21 August, 2014

AsIAm.ie has today published a series of guides to help people with autism deal with the major ch...[...]

Sean O’Rourke Show Podcast: AsIAm “Back to School” Handbooks

by - 20 August, 2014

Tomorrow, AsIAm will launch its "Back to School" Handbooks on Autism, for parents, students and t...[...]

Download Today: AsIAm “Back to School” Handbooks

by - 20 August, 2014

Education can throw up many challenges for students with Autism such as the environment, structur...[...]

Bray Lakers Video – Who needs Garth Brooks?

by - 28 July, 2014

These past few weeks the country has been inconsolable due to the Garth Brooks saga. Here at AsI...[...]

Improving our site for people with Autism & Intellectual Disabilities

by - 24 July, 2014

AsIAm.ie is committed to continuously improving the service we offer, in  order to live true to o...[...]

VOLUNTEERS NEEDED: New Foróige Youth Club for Teens with ASD – coming to Goatstown October 2014

by - 24 July, 2014

Foróige, Ireland's leading national youth organisation changing the lives of young people aged 10...[...]

Your Ideas – AsIAm Schools Programme

by - 23 July, 2014

School plays a major part in everyone's life at some stage - first as a student and then, often, ...[...]

Research Opportunity: HFA / AS & Anxiety

by - 7 July, 2014

Bronagh Flynn is a PhD researcher in the School of Psychology, Trinity College Dublin. She is cur...[...]

SPOT Therapy Summer Camp & Preparing for changes in school

by - 3 July, 2014

SPOT Therapy shares time on preparing for changes in school and about their summer camp. Prepari...[...]

Adam’s Blog: Our first AsIAm Liaison Officer Meeting

by - 27 June, 2014

I haven't had the opportunity to write my own blog on the site for a few weeks as we have been bu...[...]

Joanne Fine: Lego Camp

by - 25 June, 2014

Joanne Fine is a speech & Language Therapist working in a private capacity in DLR (Buttercup ...[...]

NCSE SNA Allocations

by - 25 June, 2014

The National Council for Special Education has published its SNA allocation for September 2014, o...[...]

Carrie Burton: Jack makes three for us

by - 17 June, 2014

Frequent blogger and AsIAm Liaison Officer, Carrie Burton, writes of the challenges of a third di...[...]

Sinead Farrelly: Living with Asperger’s in College

by - 17 June, 2014

Sinead Farrelly bravely tells us what it's been like being an 'aspie' in college. Originally publ...[...]

Social Opportunities for Adults

by - 16 June, 2014

For those of on the Spectrum, socialising can definitely be tough. This is true especially in the...[...]

Yvonne Newbold: 10 Great Things People with Autism can add to society

by - 3 June, 2014

Yvonne Newbold is the author of "The Special Parent's Handbook", a practical, hands-on parenting ...[...]

Ambassador of Ability: Amazing performance by Martin Finn on “The Late Late Show”

by - 17 May, 2014

We were really inspired by the appearance of Martin Finn and his father, John, on the "The Late L...[...]

Adam’s Blog: From Morocco to the Aras

by - 9 May, 2014

It has certainly been a very busy few weeks and so I am sorry to only be finding the time to upda...[...]

Our visit to Aras an Uachtarain

by - 9 May, 2014

AsIAm.ie Press Release and Photo Gallery from our recent visit to Aras an Uachtarain Tuesday May ...[...]

Fionn & Caoilte Hamill: Our Trip to the AsIAm Launch

by - 23 April, 2014

On Monday a few weeks ago, our family drove up the road to Dublin. As you may know, Adam Harris i...[...]

CALL-OUT: Local AsIAm Liaison Officers

by - 23 April, 2014

Since launch day we have been working hard, travelling Ireland to promote our message and buildin...[...]

Claire Heylin: The abilities of children with Aspergers Syndrome

by - 15 April, 2014

Primary school teacher Claire Heylin taught in the Asperger’s unit in St Joseph’s CBS, Fairview, ...[...]

Shauna Gilligan: “Mama, the sunrise is orange”

by - 14 April, 2014

Shauna Gilligan is a writer and mother of a son on the Autism Spectrum. In the article below, she...[...]

Carrie Burton: A second diagnosis in the family

by - 14 April, 2014

Frequent blogger, Carrie Burton, writes on the recent diagnosis of her second child, Ava, with AD...[...]

WAA Week Round-Up

by - 7 April, 2014

It's only the start of World Autism Awareness Month, but for many the week around World Autism Aw...[...]

Minister Reilly comments on launch of AsIAm.ie

by - 7 April, 2014

Minister Reilly's recent statement on the launch of AsIAm.ie The Minister for Health, Dr. James ...[...]

OPEN: July Provision Applications

by - 7 April, 2014

Children on the Autism Spectrum are eligible for a maximum of 40 hours tuition (or 10 hours per w...[...]

Dr Aoife Lyons: Organisational & Study Skills

by - 5 April, 2014

  Dr Aoife Lyons, licensed clinical psychologist and university lecturer in UCD and DCU, ha...[...]

Lorraine Dempsey – Getting the real message of Autism to the public

by - 5 April, 2014

This week we celebrated World Autism Awareness Day #WAAD2014, but what does that really entail? W...[...]

Knocktemple NS Autism Awareness Week

by - 4 April, 2014

Knocktemple National School was the first school in Cavan to set up an Autism class, 7 years ago....[...]

Mairead Quinn: Our Doggy Superheroes

by - 4 April, 2014

April  is Autism Awareness Month but we’re aware of Autism 365 days a year in our house. Our hom...[...]

Noel Quigley: Our lovely daughter with Autism

by - 3 April, 2014

Following on from his recent article on his son with Aspergers, Noel, an AsiAm.ie board member, w...[...]

Vanessa Fox-O’Loughlin: Get Writing for AsIAm.ie

by - 3 April, 2014

Vanessa is an author, agent and director of writing.ie, Ireland's national writing website. She a...[...]

Lisa Domican: A is for Acceptance

by - 2 April, 2014

Lisa Domican is a mother of 2 children (Grace and Liam, pictured) on the Autism Spectrum and a so...[...]

Adam’s Blog: This WAAD – Let’s “normalise” diversity

by - 2 April, 2014

My blog for World Autism Awareness Day - By Adam Harris Normal is a strange word we use to defin...[...]

Carrie Burton: Autism has made us who we are

by - 2 April, 2014

Regular blogger, Carrie Burton, talks about how Autism has challenged, but also strengthened, her...[...]

VIDEO: Living with Autism – AsIAm.ie Stakeholders

by - 2 April, 2014

As part of our launch celebrations and preparations for World Autism Awareness Day 2014. We aske...[...]

Grainne Lynch: The Journey – Diagnosis and Education

by - 2 April, 2014

Grainne Lynch is a business woman, nurse, Autism and advocate and parent of a son with Autism. Ch...[...]

Launch Poem: Erin Fornoff

by - 2 April, 2014

Erin Fornoff is a published poet and Artistic Director for Lingo, Ireland’s first spoken work fes...[...]

Asperger’s Story – Noel Quigley

by - 1 April, 2014

Noel Quigley is a Board Member of AsIAm.ie - here he shares his experiences of raising a son with...[...]

What do YOU want us to do?

by - 1 April, 2014

Well.. last night was launch night! It was amazing to hear the excitement at the event from stak...[...]

AsIAm Launch: Adam’s Speech

by - 1 April, 2014

We held our formal media launch last night - showcasing our site and outlining our aspirations to...[...]

Dr Aoife Lyons: Things students with Autism or ADHD would like their teachers to know

by - 23 March, 2014

Dr Aoife Lyons, licensed clinical psychologist and university lecturer in UCD and DCU, puts herse...[...]

This Week: 5 Must-See Autism Videos

by - 9 March, 2014

To bring to life what we have been talking about on AsIAm.ie, today we bring you 5 must-see video...[...]

Want to win a Zoomer Dog? To be in with a chance, register in next 48 hours!

by - 17 February, 2014

We have spent the last 2 months focusing on getting the sites content to a high standard and list...[...]

Good News: Happy Birthday Colin

by - 12 February, 2014

Its a wet, miserable evening outside so we decided it was important to share something positive! ...[...]

Safe Internet Day: An Autism Perspective

by - 11 February, 2014

AsIAm.ie would like to take this opportunity to mark the important occasion that is Safe Internet...[...]

New Research: Why do those of us with Autism withdraw?

by - 6 February, 2014

Enjoys his/her own company. Amused by his/her own thoughts. Detached from surroundings. Self-impo...[...]

Video: “What is Autism”

by - 4 February, 2014

Galway Autism Partnership has created this super video "Autism is". The question "What is Autism...[...]

Event: Lego Therapy Sessions

by - 3 February, 2014

AsIAm.ie is delighted to share this event notice for Buttercup Speech and Language Therapy, who w...[...]

What I wish I’d known about Aspergers

by - 3 February, 2014

In this guest blog, our contributor brilliantly gives, what so many parents of children with Auti...[...]

Newstalk Mindfeed: “Pitch of the Week”

by - 2 February, 2014

Adam Harris was on Newstalk MindFeed this morning with Norah Casey for "Pitch of the Week" Durin...[...]

Withdrawal Rooms Campaign: Morning Ireland

by - 30 January, 2014

AsIAm.ie is continuing to campaign on the issue of the misuse of withdrawal/isolation rooms in AS...[...]

Under-16s with ADHD now entitled to Long-Term Illness Card

by - 28 January, 2014

The Ombudsman, Peter Tyndall, has recommended that all people with ADHD be deemed automatically e...[...]

Public Perception: What YOU think. What I feel

by - 23 January, 2014

AsIAm.ie is committed to reaching out to the general public, who may have no knowledge of the con...[...]

Mary’s Blog: My views on managing behaviour in school – as a parent and SNA

by - 22 January, 2014

Mary Harris writes this week on her views of on managing and supporting a child with Autism's beh...[...]

Survey: National Autism Registry & Biobank

by - 22 January, 2014

As you may know, we have been delighted to be able to play some small part, in recent weeks, in t...[...]

Adam’s Blog: Importance of making Autism an issue for everyone

by - 20 January, 2014

A number of days ago I visited IADT in Dun Laoghaire to speak to "Psyc Soc" the college's society...[...]

Research Opportunity: Identifying Risk Factors in Autism

by - 17 January, 2014

AsIAm.ie is delighted to share this research opportunity with our users. If you are interested in...[...]

Petition: Withdrawal Rooms in ASD Units

by - 13 January, 2014

  Some of our readers may have seen an article on TheJournal.ie this morning in relation to...[...]

Publich Consultation Meeting – Establishment of National Registry for Autism and Related Disorders

by - 9 January, 2014

AsIAm.ie is delighted to be helping with this important project - we hope to see many of you at t...[...]

Planes, Asperger Syndrome, and Airports

by - 8 January, 2014

Introduction My name is Sean Foley. I am 25 years old and I have Asperger Syndrome – an autistic...[...]

Travels with my Aspergers Syndrome

by - 7 January, 2014

In 2013 I had more travel experiences than in any year gone by in my 25 years on the planet. Most...[...]

Wishlist: January 6th – Sunday 12th January 2013

by - 6 January, 2014

Do you really want to spend another week with us just talking, talking, talking at you? We don't!...[...]

Tips for SNAs in the Post-Christmas Re-Adjustment Period

by - 6 January, 2014

Mary Harris (Mother of Adam, SNA & Director of AsIAm.ie) shares her tips on helping and suppo...[...]

Book Review: The Rosie Project

by - 6 January, 2014

Vanesssa Fox-O'Loughlin is a Director of AsIAm.ie and the Founder and Editor of Writing.ie. Over ...[...]

State Exams Students: Facing Back to School

by - 5 January, 2014

Between now and June is a big time for everyone doing the Junior or Leaving Cert this year. It wo...[...]

Back to School Blues: Parent’s Guide

by - 4 January, 2014

Santa has been and gone and turkey dinners are, by now, just a far and distant memory..... and on...[...]


by - 2 January, 2014

AsIAm.ie is committed to providing you with the most relevant, interesting and human stories and ...[...]

Family Guide: Minimise Stress & Maximise Fun at Christmas

by - 18 December, 2013

Christmas time is an extra busy time in all homes ,routine changes, our houses are usually busier...[...]

Autism and Video games

by - 16 December, 2013

"Everything in moderation" is a classic cliche and yet it really sums up good advice when it come...[...]

Vote for Fionn

by - 12 December, 2013

Our friend, frequent blogger and fellow Autism awareness activist, Fionn Hamill, has been nominat...[...]

Adam’s Blog: AsIAm is finally here!

by - 10 December, 2013

It is 3 years next month, from when I first sat down in the International Bar, in Wicklow Street,...[...]

Susan Boyle: I have Aspergers Syndrome

by - 10 December, 2013

We here in AsIAm have been reading, with much interest, the announcement from Susan Boyle, in an ...[...]

Adam’s Blog: What I have been up to?

by - 29 July, 2013

Hi Everyone! It has been a couple of busy weeks since I have had the chance to sit down and upda...[...]

Fionn & Helen Hamill: AS & The Challenges of School Holidays

by - 10 July, 2013

School holidays, especially the long Summer break, can be very challenging times for people wit...[...]

Adam appointed to NCSE Consultative Forum

by - 5 July, 2013

We are delighted to announce that the National Council for Special Education appointed our Founde...[...]

Adam Harris’ Interview on SNAs and NCSE’s Announcement

by - 23 June, 2013

On Friday last, Adam joined Norah Casey of Newstalk Breakfast to discuss the role played by SNAs ...[...]

Adam’s Blog: Freedom at Last

by - 21 June, 2013

It took 2 years in special needs education and 12 in mainstream education but on Wednesday last I...[...]

Video: Dr Bill Heward, QUB Lecture

by - 8 May, 2013

Our friend, Dr. Karola Dillenburger, and the team in the Centre for Behavioral Analysis in Queens...[...]

Ann Kennedy: The challenges of growing up undiagnosed

by - 2 May, 2013

Ann Kennedy is a 60 year old lady living with Asperger's Syndrome. In this incredibly honest pie...[...]

Carrie Burton: Communion Day – The Day We Thought We’d Never See!

by - 1 May, 2013

In this article our regular contributor, Carrie Burton, shares her experiences of preparing her d...[...]

Ben: Our School Autism Talk

by - 25 April, 2013

We were delighted to open our inbox today and find this lovely article from Ben, in St. Cronan's ...[...]

Adam’s Blog: The Future Looks Bright

by - 23 April, 2013

Well it has been a few weeks since I have had the opportunity to blog. I have been working hell f...[...]

Arman Khodaei: The Challenge of Relationships

by - 16 April, 2013

In a bravely honest guest-blog from Arman Khodaei, Founder - Empower Autism Now, we get a really ...[...]

Vanessa Fox O’Loughlin: Labels have Their Uses

by - 6 April, 2013

Vanessa Fox-O'Loughlin, a parent of a child with Asperger's Syndrome and a member of the Board of...[...]

Fionn & Caoilte: What people should be aware of about Asperger’s

by - 2 April, 2013

It's World Autism Awareness Day so brothers, Fionn and Caoilte Hamill, fills us in on what he fe...[...]

“Autism Counts” IAA commissioned research from DCU

by - 2 April, 2013

"Autism Counts" a study conducted by the School of Nursing, Dublin City University and commission...[...]

Adam’s Blog: World Autism Awareness Day

by - 2 April, 2013

Happy World Autism Awareness Day! Throughout the globe today buildings such as the Empire State B...[...]

Fionn & Helen Hamill – Why we blog

by - 1 April, 2013

Writing about personal experiences can be tough - it can be considered embarrassing and many of u...[...]

Support: Holiday Time

by - 27 March, 2013

School's out! As you are aware the school's broke up for Easter on Friday and won't be back for a...[...]

Support: St. Patrick’s Day

by - 17 March, 2013

For many families and individuals on the Autistic Spectrum, the St. Patrick's Day festivities can...[...]

Adam’s Blog: Coping with the Senses

by - 12 March, 2013

It has been great to see some really interesting content on the site over the last couple of week...[...]

Mary’s Blog: Mother’s Day!

by - 10 March, 2013

There isn't a more challenging or demanding job than being a mother of a child on the Autistic Sp...[...]

Mother’s Day: Susan Browne – Amazing Brains

by - 10 March, 2013

Today is Mother's Day and we want to celebrate and support all those brilliant Mum's of children ...[...]

Caoilte Hamill: The Pros & Cons of having an older brother with Asperger’s!

by - 8 March, 2013

We were delighted to receive a blog from Caoilte Hamill, brother of Fionn - our regular contribut...[...]

Explainer: Autism Bill 2012

by - 8 March, 2013

Today Dail Eireann debates the Autism Bill 2012, tabled by Michael McCarthy TD, the bill, if pass...[...]

Carrie Burton: Asperger’s is like a Jigsaw Puzzle

by - 6 March, 2013

Parenting a child with Autism can be tough, and at time parents allow the stress, anxiety and wor...[...]

Louise Greene – My Experience of Social Stories

by - 27 February, 2013

Louise Greene shares her views and experiences of social stories in her latest piece for AsIAm.ie...[...]

Mary’s Blog – Food Fads

by - 25 February, 2013

This week, Mary writes about her experience of the foods fads and "fussy" eating habits of AS chi...[...]

Susan Helper – Our Experiences of AS & Drug Abuse

by - 25 February, 2013

Susan Helper is a parent of a young man with Aspergers who is recovering from a drug addiction in...[...]

Fionn Hamill: Meltdowns

by - 22 February, 2013

In this very frank and honest article, Fionn Hamill brilliantly explains what having a meltdown i...[...]

Keith Young – Life at Camp Akeela

by - 22 February, 2013

Keith Young, is a PhD student in the Department of Education and Professional Studies at the Univ...[...]

Aspergers Syndrome – The Need for a Whole Community Approach

by - 19 February, 2013

"People don't understand me". This is the response you will get from many people, of all ages, wi...[...]

Innovation: The Story of the Grace App

by - 18 February, 2013

In the latest article of our Innovation series, which celebrates and raises awareness of creative...[...]

Adam’s Blog: School Begins Again – What are your concerns?

by - 17 February, 2013

Well, it was good while it lasted, but tomorrow the morning tutorial bells will ring again and sc...[...]

Becky Heaver: “And a self-advocate is born”

by - 15 February, 2013

Becky Heaver, PhD, tells us about her work as a person with Aspergers Syndrome who also runs a s...[...]

Restarting Routine: Back to School

by - 15 February, 2013

Just the weekend now lies between the end of midterm and the long-dreaded return to school. Asper...[...]

Interview: Sensodyne Dentist of the Year, Dr. Gillian Smith

by - 14 February, 2013

Today we finally got an opportunity to catch up with Dr. Gillian Smith, Founder and Principal Pr...[...]

Innovation: Animated Language Learning (ALL)

by - 14 February, 2013

Innovation is a new series on AspergersAdvice.org which aims to highlight innovative developments...[...]

Ideas: Dealing with hypersensitivity / overstimulation Part 1

by - 13 February, 2013

Many people with Aspergers Syndrome find sensory overload (hypersensitivity / overstimulation) a ...[...]

Adam’s Blog: Anxiety

by - 12 February, 2013

In writing my blog this week I guess I am trying to address a topic which very much defines Asper...[...]

Video: 5 Top Aspergers-related videos

by - 11 February, 2013

Its a cold, wet Monday afternoon so we decided that it was time for some POSITIVITY. Take a loo...[...]

Fionn Hamill: The Strengths My Aspergers Gives Me

by - 10 February, 2013

Often Aspergers Syndrome or autism are betrayed as severe disabilities or challenges that can't ...[...]

Hannah Dyson: The Challenges of Concentration

by - 9 February, 2013

I think I am quite lucky in the fact that I know many Aspie people who cannot “switch off” to noi...[...]

Dr. Karola Dillenburger: A new look at a ” theory” of Autism

by - 3 February, 2013

Dr. Karola Dillenburger is the Professor of Behavioural Analysis and Education at Queen's Univers...[...]

Guest Blog: Fionn Hamill – My Most Annoying Habits

by - 2 February, 2013

Fionn Hamill, our guest blogger, tells us about his AS-related bad habits in his his latest fra...[...]

Adam’s Blog: Overcoming the Anxiety around Socialising

by - 2 February, 2013

I wanted to write this blog today in response to the fascinating content we have seen over the co...[...]

Interview: Ryan Lampour (W.A.D Rapper)

by - 1 February, 2013

Ryan Larmour is a 16 year old living in Northern Ireland, recently he has attracted attention on ...[...]

Guest Blog: Fionn Hamill – I like being different

by - 31 January, 2013

In his latest blog for AspergersAdvice.org, Fionn Hamill brilliantly explains how Aspergers Syn...[...]

It’s a Small World, Asper-All

by - 31 January, 2013

Jennifer O'Toole, Founder and CEO of AsperKids, writes about her recent trip to Europe to promote...[...]

Loving Someone with Asperger’s Syndrome

by - 31 January, 2013

Dr. Cindy Ariel runs a psychology practise, Alternative Choices, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania an...[...]

Guest Blog: Fionn Hamill – Making Friends

by - 30 January, 2013

Today, Fionn Hamill, our guest blogger (see his blog Autisticandproud.wordpress.com) sheds some l...[...]

Mary’s Blog: Don’t be afraid to challenge your child to reach their potential

by - 30 January, 2013

In her latest blog post, Mary Harris discusses the benefits of challenging your child to fulfill ...[...]

Helen Hamill: Early Help

by - 30 January, 2013

He was 5 years old. We had noticed that even after reading his favourite book every night for mon...[...]

Carrie Burton – Living with Autism

by - 30 January, 2013

My daughter Mia has Aspergers. She is 8 and was first diagnosed when she was 4. It has been a lon...[...]

Guest Blogger: Fionn Hamill – Dislikes

by - 29 January, 2013

Fionn Hamill, this week's guest blogger, sheds some light on an important topic for so many peopl...[...]

Ruby Aspie – My Story

by - 29 January, 2013

We received this insightful piece from Ruby Aspie (pen name), which gives us a great insight into...[...]

Guest Blog: Fionn & Helen Hamill – School and its difficulties and advantages for Aspies

by - 28 January, 2013

The transition to Secondary School is a challenge for many people with Aspergers Syndrome, and ca...[...]

Guest Blog: Dr. Josie Dovidio – Dental Health Considerations & Aspergers Syndrome

by - 28 January, 2013

Dr. Josie (as most patients call her) spends her spare time delighting in her husband and 2 sons,...[...]

Guest Blog – Fionn Hamill: When Someone Dies

by - 28 January, 2013

Many people with Aspergers Syndrome struggle to define or understand their emotions, especially a...[...]

Guest Blog – Fionn Hamill: Performing in Pantomine

by - 26 January, 2013

Fionn Hamill, is a 12 year old boy with Aspergers Syndrome and he writes about his life at autist...[...]

Holly Adams: Teaching drama to children with AS

by - 24 January, 2013

Holly Adams shares her blog of her experiences of teaching drama and theater workshops to childre...[...]

Adam’s Blog: Challenges of Concentration and Hyperactivity

by - 23 January, 2013

Its unusual for me to be back here with another blog so quickly after my last however I feel comp...[...]

Irish Autism Action: CHASE Anti-Bullying Campign

by - 22 January, 2013

  Bullying and exclusion can be major barriers for people with Aspergers Syndrome and Autis...[...]

Toby Lee: Tip of the Day for Dyslexia

by - 19 January, 2013

Toby Lee is our guest blogger today. He works extensively with people with conditions like Dyslex...[...]

Mary’s Blog: The Importance of Early Intervention

by - 18 January, 2013

Mary Harris, mother of Adam Harris (Founder of AsIAm.ie), writes about the importance of early in...[...]

Adam’s Blog: The Recurring Question

by - 17 January, 2013

Should I tell my child they have Aspergers? How old where you when you found out you were autisti...[...]

Getting to College: DARE Scheme

by - 17 January, 2013

It's that time of year again! Students up and down the country are preparing to sit the Leaving C...[...]

DSM-V – What Does It All Mean?

by - 16 January, 2013

As many of you will be aware that American Psychiatric Association (APA) recently announced the p...[...]

Living with Aspergers: The Challenges of Adolescence

by - 31 December, 2012

Hannah Dyson is an adult living with Aspergers Syndrome in the United Kingdom. She will be writin...[...]

Video: Adam talks to Founder of Specialisterne, Thorkil Sonne

by - 19 December, 2012

AspergersAdvice's Adam Harris was at the recent launch of Specialisterne Ireland, a programme des...[...]

Adam’s Blog: AS and the Challenge of Exams

by - 12 December, 2012

It's been a few weeks since I have written a personal piece for the website so I decided that sin...[...]

Personal Story: Aspergers & Anxiety

by - 6 October, 2012

Louise Greene is mum to a 7 year old boy with Aspergers Syndrome. Below she tells of his struggl...[...]

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