My Son's Surrogate Parents Help Us Have a Normal Family Life; Having an Autistic Child in the Family Can Be Stressful, but Assistance Is at Hand. as Share the Care Week Begins, One Parent Tells Ian Parri How Surrogate Families Can Be of Help

Daily Post (Liverpool, England), September 23, 2002 | Go to article overview

My Son's Surrogate Parents Help Us Have a Normal Family Life; Having an Autistic Child in the Family Can Be Stressful, but Assistance Is at Hand. as Share the Care Week Begins, One Parent Tells Ian Parri How Surrogate Families Can Be of Help


Byline: Ian Parri

A S her son, Thomas, finally slips off to sleep in the deep of the night after some not inconsiderable effort, Monya Sheridan could be forgiven for hoping that things will be better tomorrow.

Bringing up four children as a single mother is no easy option, between one thing and another. If the the kids aren't squabbling among themselves, as children do, they'll be wanting their mother's attention when they're unwell or seeking a shoulder to cry on.

Add an autistic child into that volatile mix, and the problems soon escalate so that at times they can appear almost insurmountable.

Thomas, now nine, was diagnosed as being autistic six years ago. Monya's other children are Heather, 11, Jordan, six, and Jamie, who's just 14 months old.

She freely admits that she can often feel at the end of her tether. Thomas can demand so much of her time, when he's not at school, that the other children can sometimes feel deprived of it.

But Monya, from Old Colwyn, recognises that she's luckier than many in having a local family willing to take care of Thomas for a weekend once a month, under a Share the Care scheme run jointly by the Conwy and Denbighshire family placement teams.

``Thomas has got better as the years have progressed, but his behaviour has become more aggressive,'' she says.

``He needs constant attention, and to be watched constantly. He's not aware of dangers, as such, he has trouble washing and dressing himself, and he can't socialise too well.

``He can't cope with too many children being around him, and can't cope with little kids in particular. He says to me, `I know I'm only a kid, but I need to get away from them. I hate them.' ``That's where respite care is so good for him: he can get away from other children. They (the carers) have him on a one-to-one basis, which is nice for him.

``We had a nice family in Denbigh, Yvonne and Steve, but unfortunately they had to give it up. That was awful, because then we had nobody to turn to. But now we've got Mark and Sandra in Dwygyfylchi, who Thomas loves to bits. They spoil him rotten, and he can't wait to get there.

``My other children then get more attention, and we can be a normal family. When Thomas is away, we don't have to stick to a routine; when he's here we have a very strict routine, because he has to know what he's supposed to be doing at a certain time every day.

``Heather gets jealous and says `we don't get that', because his carers really spoil him and treat him with visits to the cinema, or whatever. But if he wasn't having a good time, I wouldn't send him anyway.''

With this week designated as Share the Care Week, and 2002 having been made National Autism Awareness Year, the Shared Care Network has jumped on the opportunity to seek more carers to help out stressed-out families such as Monya's.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

My Son's Surrogate Parents Help Us Have a Normal Family Life; Having an Autistic Child in the Family Can Be Stressful, but Assistance Is at Hand. as Share the Care Week Begins, One Parent Tells Ian Parri How Surrogate Families Can Be of Help
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.