Wednesday 26 April 2017

WonderfulWednesday: oktosay via @heads_together

Royal Family #itsoksay

This week's wonderful Wednesday share was found on Heads Together through their twitter feed. It's a fantastic video staring some members of the Royal Family chatting about the normalcy of mental health and how talking about it helps.

Did you know that 70% of people with autism experience some type of mental health issue? Studies have shown that in individuals with autism about 30% have Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) and anxiety disorders in children with ASD has been reported to be anywhere between 11% and 84%.

We certainly understand about ASD and anxiety.  Anxiety was picked up by a member of CAMHS when we were seeking some help for his ADHD and his difficulty in making decisions. We realised his worrying was far more than just being concerned about changes to routine or the pressure of making decisions. And we now have a few strategies to help when we recognise his anxiety. Giving him time to talk about things, when he wants to, is definitely one of them.

But it's not just something to think about for my boys.  My neurotypical daughter is only four years old but I'm aware of how experiences can influence her mental health.  The Children’s Society’s Good Childhood Report 2016  made a big splash earlier this year in the media and online with alarming new findings. The research with thousands of young people discovered that girls’ happiness in Britain is getting worse.

One in seven young girls says they’re unhappy with their lives overall and this is led by a significant decrease in happiness with appearance, friends and marginally with life as a whole. One in three of 10-15 year old girls are not happy with their looks.  My little girl is into pink, purple and princesses already, but I do try and talk to her about what she's doing... focus on the play not just the pretty.

So hope can I help?  Well, I encourage talking about feelings.  Not, the easiest thing to do when some of your kids are autistic.  But it's by talking about it specifically that we find how the kids feel and encourage an environment of being open and talking about how we feel.  I'm glad when my son tells me, "I'm upset by that," as it's natural to be upset by things, what's important is how we help with the way you feel.  And talking about it starts the ball.  Anthony telling me about his fears can help reduce them.  And that's wonderful.

And that's what these members of the Royal Family are talking about in this video.  Thanks to Heads Together for my wonderful Wednesday post this week.  Have a look at the video here in full too.

This post also supports the #wetalkmakaton sign of the week 'Princess' via The Makaton Charity.

1 comment:

  1. So, so important that the Royal family have got behind this project - showing that talking about your feelings is a normal thing to do. I hope it will help lots of people who struggle to be more open about their feelings. #PostsFromTheHeart


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