Autistic adults have meltdowns too 

By | February 21, 2018

This is an anonymous guest post.


There is so much talk about children with autism having meltdowns these days. 

There is much more awareness that a child may not be naughty, that they could be autistic and the National Autistic Society  did a recent high profile campaign highlighting the issues when children with autism have sensory overload. 

Yet no-one seems to talk about adults with autism having meltdowns.

I have an autism adult friend.He is kind, gently, friendly and placid … until he has a meltdown. 
If you think seeing a child with autism having a meltdown is scary you should witness an adult autistic meltdown. Adult autistic meltdowns are terrifying. 

The causes are often the same as they are for children: high stress building up, feeling out of control, too much pressure placed on them and an overload of sensory stimuli all at once. These issues can build over minutes, hours, days or even weeks until they become like an over-inflated balloon and just pop. 

I have seen so many children have sensory meltdowns because I parent more than one child on the spectrum. I also attend events for families with children on the spectrum and see meltdowns of all shapes and sizes every week.  They are noisy, frightening, unpredictable, hard to manage and involve high emotions.  I see parents having to restrain their child for their own safety, some giving bear hugs and others strapping children into buggies or cat seats for everyone’s safety. 

In full autistic meltdown the person loses control of their emotions, reasoning, rational thinking and logic.  

They need to fight, let it out, scream it out or somehow release the build up of tension and stress that has mounted up within them. 

They lose control of all rational thought often putting themselves and others in danger. 

This is exactly the same for adults except the person is stronger, louder and potentially able to cause more damage. 

Watching my autistic adult friend have a huge meltdown was not pretty and I was scared. His very character changed and it was like a switch went off in his head while his body exploded in ways he would be utterly ashamed of when he recovered. 

His language changed. A man I had never heard swear cursed like a trooper.

His nature changed. He went from sweet and caring to aggressive and unpredictable. 

His body changed. He went from relaxed and calm to angry and defensive.

His volume changed. He went from quiet and subdued to loud and violent. 

Things were thrown, punched, kicked and broken. Exactly the same as I had seen happen with children but on a much bigger scale. 

I could have called the police but would that have helped?  I kept thinking what if this was my child?  The thing is in a few years time my autistic child will be an adult and what if someone calls the police on him when he has an autistic meltdown? My friend is someone’s child too. No-one deserves to be locked up because they had an autistic meltdown. 

My friend calmed down. He won’t talk about his meltdown because for him talking just brings it all back to his head again and causes it all to build up to explosion again. Neither of us want that to happen. 

I don’t want my friend to know I have written about him. I don’t want him embarrassed by that day or defined as some awful person because he has an autism meltdown. No-one would judge my son if it was him so why do we judge adults? 

I think it’s because we still have this expectation that you grow out of autism, which includes having meltdowns. 

Autism is a life-long disability and my friend proved to me that adults with autism can and do have meltdowns too. 

I only wish people realised this more.  

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If #TheMMLinky 

By | February 19, 2018

I have to admit, I struggled a bit thinking of what I could write for today.

It’s been a full-on half term and my head is full of potential posts but just haven’t had the time to pop anything down – apart from a very brief list.

D has had some anxieties around returning to school and T is poorly, just to add to the mix!

But suddenly last night, thoughts of my grandparents popped into my head.  

They died before T and D were born and I would have loved for them to meet them, I have such good memories of holidays in their house by the coast, of my grandad explaining to me what the different coloured smoke meant when a new Pope was being chosen, of their pride as they talked about their married life and the cuddles, lots of cuddles! 

I remembered my grandma’s favourite poem, “If” by Rudyard Kipling and the words of that motivated her and motivate me:

Especially the lines:

“If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew

To serve your turn long after they are gone,

And so hold on when there is nothing in you

Except the Will which says to them: ‘Hold on!'”

Even though the poem must have been written over 100 years ago, the words still resonate today, don’t they? 

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InstaLinkLove – Week 75 #instalinklove 

By | February 17, 2018

Welcome to week 75 of InstaLinkLove!

If you haven’t joined us before, then this is the easy-to-use linky which helps you get your Instagram posts a bit more interaction and interest.

Thank you to everyone who linked up last week and welcome to those who are back for more and those who are first-timers.
This is a really straightforward, no stress (none of us need that in our lives!), easy to use linky.

All you need to do is link up the URL from up to four of your most recent Instagram posts. We suggest most recent because this is better for interaction.

It’s just a case of finding your Instagram account on-line, clicking on the photo that you want to link up, clicking on “share post” and then copying and pasting the link into the Linky below.

The only condition is that you go over and “like” everyone else’s pictures who’ve linked up.

Here’s my favourites from last week’s link-up:

Please remember our (very easy) rules:

*You can link up to 4 images per Instagram Account per week.

*Please remember to visit and “like” the other pictures linked up, prior to next week’s Linky opening.

It would also be great if you could share your post with the linky on Instagram using the hashtag #instalinklove to help grow the community.

Thanks and really looking forward to seeing what you’ve been up to on Instagram this week x

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Getting that crowning glory feeling back with The Harley Street Hair Clinic 

By | February 12, 2018

Our hair, it can make or break our confidence, can’t it?

However fab you might feel in an outfit, a “bad hair day” can completely destroy self-esteem and bring us down.

It’s one of the first things I notice about people, their hair, coming after a friendly smile and their eyes.

Sometimes our hair needs a little bit of help, after all, many issues can cause a reduction in the quality of our hair, or even hair loss – stress, medication (ironically a well-known anti-depressant lists “hairloss” amongst potential side effects from taking a tablet that’s meant to make you feel better!), environmental factors, to name but a few.  I’m very familiar with the feeling, having had an adverse medication reaction.

For some people, the suggestion of a hair weave or hair piece can restore much-needed confidence, but for a more permanent option, hair transplants are becoming more popular, both with men and women.

The FUE transplant process involves “a highly experienced doctor extracting hair follicles from the donor area, typically the back of the neck, using a specialised extraction instrument less than 1mm in diameter. Follicles are then transferred to the recipient area on your scalp and implanted using a powerful stereo microscope in groups of one to four hairs, just as they grow in nature.

This is a Minimally invasive,surgical procedure so you will remain fully conscious the whole time as only local anesthetic is required. Recovery time is short and the risk of complications is low.”

And once the follicles have successfully taken, new growth appears where it’s needed, restoring self-esteem and without the need to worry about high winds or that a hair piece may need washing.

Any treatment can be tailored to suit individual requirements, giving as much or as little new potential hair growth as is needed.

For those with hair loss issues, the hair transplant cost is a relatively small price to pay for the renewed self-worth of no more bad hair days.

A gallery of before and after FUE treatments at the Harley Street Hair Clinic can be seen here, Wayne Rooney has had the FUE procedure and, as you’ll see from his testimony, was delighted with his results:


If you are considering a FUE procedure, you may have questions, below are some FAQs:

“Can I meet previous patients?

Yes and we encourage you to research the limitations and possibilities of hair transplantation and can support you in making the correct decisions for you. Please register for our open days when we can arrange for you to meet with previous patients to examine the quality of our work.

What is Donor Management?

The donor hair available to patients during a lifetime is limited and we have to make the correct choice to ensure we select the best strategy to make sure the donor hair is used wisely over a patient’s lifespan. This is crucial to ensure patients gain the best result possible and be educated regarding the potential for future hair loss.

How much does a FUE Procedure Cost?

The cost of the procedure depends on the number of grafts and the complexity of the area to be transplanted. All costs quoted include check-ups and post-operative medications. Repair cases are complex and a speciality at the clinic. Due to the challenging nature of corrective surgery we have to examine patients in detail before providing a cost estimate.

Where is the Procedure Performed?

The Procedure is performed at our clinic where, as a private hospital, we have full access to an in-house pharmacy and onsite testing facilities. 

Do you offer Finance Facilities?

Yes we can provide 12 month interest free credit agreements via our finance partner. Please ask for further details at your consultation.

Do I have to cut my hair short?

In certain cases we can transplant without cutting the hair short depending on the number of grafts required. However, in the majority of cases we do cut the hair short to gain the maximum quality grafts possible.

Am I a suitable candidate?

We always advise arranging a personal consultation as there are many variables to investigate including your age, family history of hair loss, and type of hair loss. These factors determine your overall suitability for treatment.

How many procedures do I need?

The number of procedures required depends on your goals, your present level of hair loss and how this changes in the future. The majority of patients require 2 procedures in their lifetime.

How long before I see the results

The transplanted hair will begin to shed at 3-6 weeks post procedure and will then take a further 2-4 months to start re-growing. At around the 6 month stage we expect the regrowth to be at the half way stage and the final result is achieved at 12-14 months. The progress can vary and we recommend you attend the 6 month check up to review progress.

Will the results be natural?

We have a strict protocol that ensures we only have doctors completing the placement to ensure the naturalness of the final result. The FUE hair transplant procedure requires excellent surgical skills and natural artistic flair and we encourage you to view our gallery to see how we achieve the natural results which are the hallmark of a great hair transplant.

Can I get a full head of hair again?

A hair transplant cannot replace the natural density of a full head of hair but using surgical planning and artistic placement we can maximise the appearance of natural density and volume.

Are there any risks to my health in having a FUE PROCEDURE?

The FUE procedure is a very safe and minimally invasive procedure under local anaesthetic. There are very few potential health risks and, as with any surgical procedure, we take full medical precautions including ECG tests at the clinic for patients aged over 45.

What is Shock loss?

Shock loss is the loss of pre-existing or transplanted hair due to the trauma of a surgical procedure. The incidences of shock loss are rare and any hair loss caused is temporary and normal growth returns after a period of 1-3 months. Shock loss is a potential side effect of transplantation and is minimised by the expertise of our vastly experienced medical team.”

Disclosure: This is a collaborative post.

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The 1p Saving Challenge #TheMMLinky

By | February 12, 2018

There are always tips and “hacks” appearing in my FB feed, some I scroll on past but this one looked a good, motivational one to try and there’s the prospect of a few pounds to help with the Christmas bills too.

The idea behind this is that you put aside a set amount each day, or do as I’m doing, which is pop whatever spare is in my purse and tick off the corresponding amount.  

So, in theory, put in 1p on 1st January, 2p on 2nd January, increasing to £3.65 on December 31st, making a grand total of £667.95 at the end of the year! 

I’ve decided that I’ll be putting in the higher amounts before the run up to Christmas so that, come December, I’ll have less to put in.

Yes, I know, my jar is looking light at the moment, it will be heavy by the end of the year though! 

I found the tick-off savings sheet online if anyone else would like to join in.

So, that’s my motivational tip for Monday, Kelly is hosting #TheMMLinky this week but you can always join in below as the code synchronises, we always enjoy reading your posts.

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The BritMums Rustlers Burger Hacking Challenge 

By | February 11, 2018

Life is busy isn’t it? We have evenings here where it’s after school clubs, then a quick turnaround at home before a parents evening, meeting or training.  Weekends can be just the same with a quick “hello, we won/lost/drew (preferably one of the first two!)” before it’s away to an other part of the county.  And let’s not mention the kit changes and the washing that brings…

Recently we were challenged by BritMums to take part in “The Rustlers Burger Hacking Challenge”, to see how their twin packs of Southern Fried Chicken Burgers could fill tummies quickly before it’s time for the next activity.

So, armed with a gift card from Tesco, we bought the items below to complement the burgers, items which would appeal to us, both as a family and individually:

I’d seen Rustlers in our local supermarket but hadn’t previously tried them.  The fact that a burger can be ready in 90 seconds was appealing, together with the thought of Southern Fried Chicken…yum!

First up was Hubbie, he does like his carbs, so I included some microwave chips and as many vegetable sides as I thought I’d get away with (my MIL would be proud of me!):

He absolutely loved the tangy mayonnaise included in the Rustlers pack and said it enhanced the chicken burger as well as popping some on his chips and cucumber.  A definite thumbs up!  The twin pack plus chips plus veggies (yay!) was the perfect quick, easy but tasty meal for him.

Next up me:

I do like my veggies and added a bowl of tomatoes, grated carrot and grated beetroot to accompany my burger.  Like Hubbie, I found the included mayonnaise sachet a great accompaniment and the chicken was very tasty.

For T and D, I added grated carrot to D’s (she loves carrots!) and T’s was a burger as it was.  He’s not a fan of over-complicating his food and likes his food as it comes.  

Chicken is something we all enjoy and the quality of the chicken in the burger was very tasty, according to the pack details, the chicken has been marinated before a southern fried breadcrumb is added.

Now that we’ve tried the packs, I can see them being a regular feature in our fridge, not only from the convenience viewpoint but, as my next foot operation looms in a few weeks, it will be a quality meal that Hubbie can easily put together for us all whilst I’m recuperating, I wonder if he’ll include the veggies!! 

This post is an entry for BritMums Rustlers Burger Hacking Challenge, sponsored by Rustlers.  

Disclosure: I received a £20 gift card from Tesco as thanks for taking part and to purchase our ingredients.

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Bringing the outside in with Bifold Doors 

By | February 11, 2018

We moved into our home nearly (gosh) 14 years ago and saw it as a family home, a place where our (then, unborn daughter and 18 month old and 10 year old sons) children could grow up, away from the traffic and hustle and bustle of our previous mid-terrace, little house in the town centre.

Time has moved on and we have absolutely no plans to move but, as our family grew, more a wish to enhance our house and make the most of what we have.

We are very lucky to have a south-facing back garden and Bifold doors are on my wish list, not only because they look amazing – as per the image below – but they are also space-saving too. 

(Image from

You’d hardly know that they were there, would you? 

Here’s some details about the doors:

“Our bifold doors are made from aluminiun aluminium and glide effortlessly back to reveal a large unobstructed opening, merging the home and garden and letting the light flood in. 

They can create a lighter, airier living space in which you can enjoy the garden, whatever the weather.

Glazing efficiency:

28mm double glazed units achieve a U value of 1.8 W/m²K

36mm triple glazed units available, with a U value of 1.4 W/m²K

Polyamide thermal barrier to reduce heat loss and improve thermal performance

Upgrades to self-cleaning or other specialist units are available

Technical features:

Available with standard threshold with an up stand of 31mm or a low threshold version with ramps at only 15mm

High quality EDPM rubber gaskets and weather brushes to aid weather proofing

Robust stainless steel rollers for smooth and effortless operation

High security hook bolt locks and one piece keeps on main opening sashes, and shootbolt locking on floating mullions

Magnetic door clips are available to secure open door sashes

Head vents are available for background ventilation (must be fitted into frame extensions)

Handles available in white, chrome and black; door hinges available in white or black”

For me, the security aspect is a high priority, following closely behind is the ease of which the doors would open and close and their colour. 

 I have to admit that I’m not a fan of neutral colours and, as the doors come in a range of 13 colours, including red, blue, green and greys, they would suit any decor.

The doors also have a choice of hardware (the lock and handle unit) options and there are varying configurations for the doors to be fitted:  

As we have a conservatory, with the opening running along the whole of the rear, it’s good to know that the configurations are flexible enough to accommodate a, say, six door opening, with the options as above of left/right opening and stacking, opening in or out etc.


Quotations are free via the website’s quotation tool and doors are manufactured and delivered approximately two weeks after ordering, with a two hour delivery time slot.

Click here for more information on Bifold doors and how to personalise and buy them directly.

And if you fancied enhancing your existing windows to complement a Bifold door, there are window special offers available here.

Disclosure: This is a collaborative post.

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InstaLinkLove – Week 74 #instalinklove

By | February 10, 2018

Welcome to Week 74 of InstaLinkLove! 

If you haven’t joined us before, then this is the easy-to-use linky which helps you get your Instagram posts a bit more interaction and interest.

Thank you to everyone who linked up last week and welcome to those who are back for more and those who are first-timers.

This is a really straightforward, no stress (none of us need that in our lives!), easy to use linky.

All you need to do is link up the URL from up to four of your most recent Instagram posts. We suggest most recent because this is better for interaction.

It’s just a case of finding your Instagram account on-line, clicking on the photo that you want to link up, clicking on “share post” and then copying and pasting the link into the Linky below.

The only condition is that you go over and “like” everyone else’s pictures who’ve linked up.

Here’s my favourites from last week’s link-up:

Please remember our (very easy) rules:

*You can link up to 4 images per Instagram Account per week.

*Please remember to visit and “like” the other pictures linked up, prior to next week’s Linky opening.

It would also be great if you could share your post with the linky on Instagram using the hashtag #instalinklove to help grow the community.

Thanks and really looking forward to seeing what you’ve been up to on Instagram this week x

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Be You, Be True #TheMMLinky

By | February 5, 2018

Sometimes I wish I was a “hello, it’s me daaaarling!” jazz-hands type of woman, it would make life easier when it came to getting my views across.  At other times, I’m very glad I’m me, doing my best I can for my family, just getting by.

I very occasionally take pictures with me in them, more than I used to as I don’t want to be the one left out of pictures as I’m always taking them, I want my children to look through my camera roll and laugh, laugh because their mum is having a good time too, making memories.

I don’t know how to photo-shop pictures and don’t want to, presenting an untrue image doesn’t appeal.  I have features about me I’m not keen on, name me someone who doesn’t, but I don’t have the time, means or inclination to radically change any photos that I put up. 

It makes me a tad sad when I see Instagram photos of celebrities that are vastly different to either photos taken by press photographers or how they’d look on tv, what is the point? Is it that any publicity is “good” publicity or that, if a picture is put up that is majorly different, masses of people comment to that effect and then the offers to free invasive or non-invasive surgery flood in because the companies know that “fame” sells?  It’s a vicious circle then as more surgery leads to more comments, which effects self-worth and then the answer seems to be…more treatments! 

I’m glad my daughter, at 13, isn’t interested in uploading selfies and photos and has no body issues.  She wears and accepts her school uniform for what it is and – just like her mum – lives in leggings, tshirts and jumpers at the weekend.  That’s not to say she doesn’t like to pop on a party dress and raid her jewellery box on occasion, but that’s not the norm.

I was flicking through one of the weekly gossip magazines when I saw this:

Compare the pictures (the altered photo is on the right) and see just how easy (with the right tools) it is to create a totally different picture to that originally taken.  Look at magazine covers in a shop, the majority will have been photo-shopped and airbrushed, removing those “imperfections” that Society seems to decree shouldn’t be seen.  

So, that’s my message for Monday, be individual, be true to yourself, be you.

I’m hosting #TheMLinky this week and if you have any motivational messages you’d like to share, please pop them into the linky below.   

It was lovely to read the posts linked up last week and two made me think on for quite a while after reading; 

Debs at @chaosinkent had a great self-therapy idea and one that I must give a try! 


Anne at @raisiebay wrote a very powerful post about looking back and then looking forwards, something which gave me a lot of thought.

We’re looking forward to reading your posts x 

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Bye bye January – PDA, RBH and more 

By | February 3, 2018

I’m not disappointed to wave goodbye to January 2018, it’s been a long and really quite stressful month.

A month in which we’ve had more contact with T’s secondary mainstream school than I can remember, a month in which I’ve felt both disappointed in them and then, two days ago relieved.

It’s also been a month of hospital (the RBH bit) trips – a paediatric check-up for D, an ultrasound scan for me, numerous blood tests for me and – yippee – a surgeon’s chat in which he agreed to (what hopefully will be the last) foot surgery on my left foot, then a preliminary pre-op and I’ve had a provisional idea of a surgery date.  Not to mention that my FIL had an emergency hospital stay too, thankfully he’s home now.

It’s been busy! But I feel that, with the new month, we can move forward from the groundwork started in January.

D is doing well at school (phew!), she’s relishing the added task of being a school “buddy” and sees it as a chance to help the younger, smaller pupils with any anxieties at break/lunch time.  Ironically, with this task, she is putting any anxieties she has about non adult-led activity and her focussing on those other pupils, gives her less time to think about her worries – which are predominantly around other pupils rushing towards her or “banter”, to which she doesn’t know how to respond.  

And T, I’ve mentioned before how I felt that certain staff in his secondary school didn’t understand his autism or appear willing to take any difficulties he may be having into account.  This has caused immense issues with one particular school subject, with him being removed from class practically every lesson.  Not ideal for him, the rest of the class nor the teacher.

We requested a meeting to agree a way forward and I had asked for SENco attendance.  It was a shame to arrive and find neither the class teacher nor the SENco there!

I’d taken some information on PDA with me, as the symptoms were T to a ..well… T! His form teacher seemed quite surprised at the info we placed in front of him but, to his due, assured us that this information would be passed onto his teachers the next day.  He also seemed to take on board that, if T has a bad experience in the class he’s having most issues with, he doesn’t have a means of self-regulating at school, so any emotions will snowball inside him and obviously have an impact on the rest of his day.

So…has the meeting helped? Definitely! The teacher who would previously phone me to “offload” about the bad lessons actually phoned yesterday to say that he’d had a positive lesson and the strategies agreed (consistent seating plan, clear actions for T etc) had worked and she was pleased.  She also said she’d read up on autism and PDA, watched a webinar and now felt she understood T a bit more…phew! 

There was a reason it transpires that she hadn’t done research before, T’s primary school had passed NOTHING on about his diagnosis, which explains a lot! Why we’d had no SENco support, why any emails mentioning his high functioning autism diagnosis (when he was TEN) were ignored and why any phone calls received had alluded to the “crap parenting” attitude.

To say that we felt let down by primary school on T’s behalf is an understatement.  He is 1.5 years away from GCSEs and it’s a crucial time for him.  Parents evenings are a strict 5 minutes per subject and there are no opportunities to see his tutor at all, unless we specifically request.

His teacher also mentioned EHCPs in our chat and suggested T should have one.  His primary school SENco laughed at me when I suggested a statement when he was diagnosed and told me there was “no chance”.  B*tch.  His primary school never took his diagnosis seriously, part of me is not completely surprised that nothing was passed on.

Which explains why we’d had no SENco secondary school input during the last few months (years) and why they weren’t at the meeting! 

So, moving on….we have to send in copies of his diagnosis and look into an EHCP.  Part of me is relieved at this because it will mean that we have support in planning beyond school and up to mid-twenties, if we’re successful that is.

It’s all go, isn’t it? In addition, I haven’t been easily able to access WordPress for nearly two weeks.  WP support is very basic and I’m typing this on an old phone where I can access the WP app, it just crashes on my current one.  Weird.

February will be better! 

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