The Persistent Parent

May 11, 2021 Case Studies - Families Jackie Foy

Ten years ago, almost to the day, a Speech and Language Therapist came to our house (we had concerns as Patrick was 2 years and 4 months and not speaking) and looked at my boy, and said the words that rocked our world, “ I think your boy has autism”…..then left saying “someone will be in touch”…

As any parent would do, I typed ‘Autism’ into Google, and couldn’t believe what came up. My head was literally spinning and we buried our heads in the sand (and no one did get in touch) until months and months later.

Patrick was extremely hyperactive, resulting in him slicing his big toe which had to be stitched back on during surgery (that is a whole other story and anxiety I never want to experience again). Due to this reason, we had a visit by a Health Professional.

To cut a long story short, the only support we were given was a 6-month course at Scottish Autism Centre Yorkhill, which was great but had limited availability.

After a period of different nursery experiences (one where Patrick was 3 and a half and in the baby room, not good for anyone), I finally got a place in an ASN Nursery – albeit 2 hours per day.

The teachers were amazing, they taught me loads and pointed me in the direction of ENABLE Scotland, who supported Patrick with after school care and day trips, which actually saved my life, my marriage, my job and ultimately our family as a unit.

ENABLE Scotland colleagues soon became more like “family”; I was so lucky to be able to speak honestly and authentically with no judgment.

We were on our knees and just at the right time, along came ENABLE Scotland to scoop us up and wrap their arms tightly around us.

So, after ten years of searching, researching, fighting, crying, laughing and utter exhaustion… I thought about what would have helped me back then.

The answer is an honest account of life living with a disabled child, in the form of a “blog”, with links to all the resources I have found over the years, all in one place.

Each month, I will take a different topic, such as “disability living allowance”, “self-directed support”, and much, much more…

I hope you will join me in laughing, crying and venting in a safe environment…

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Much love, Jackie
(mum to Patrick)


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