photo 3 (6)

a nice person -thankyou Graham (and Crewe Alexandra :)

photo 3 (6)mum and dad always say if you are nice to people then people are generally nice to you.

i wrote a blog ages ago about Crewe Alexandra. and why i don’t mind that is strange to people that I LIKE THEM…

mum posted it -cos i don’t like social network sites – cos i am aware you can get bullied on them – so when i do a blog she posts  about it on twitter and puts on my facebook page.

A man contacted her on twitter. and said HE is a CREWEALEX supporter and he would get me a top signed. He is called Graham.

graham w


and we do not even KNOW him. He just said he would. He messaged mum for the address and on Saturday he sent a pic on twitter

One shirt signed and on the way to northern Ireland


THANKYOU. for being so nice and kind.

I LOVE it even before it has come!

from Fionn. :)

it is HERE…and i love it. Thankyou Graham:)



adult ADHD NI

A guy i know from pantomime his name is Niall…

he is an adult.

he can sing and dance and usually has a main role in the show,

i never noticed but he has ADHD…maybe i don’t notice it.

he started a site for adults in northern ireland who have ADHD.

he put up a piece i wrote about the” fidgetty” and “sensatious” parts of my aspergers.

i made the word “sensatious” up- it means sensory but not right..too tickly…or too smelly…or too many noises to describe.

i hope it helps others to understand their fidgets :)

by Fionn.

Niall put this on their facebook page.

thanks from



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teenaged complications.


aspergers and teenaged.
means a LOT of complicated stuff.

Originally posted on autisticandproud:

Being teenaged has LOTS of complications – i think for EVERYBODY!

but i can only really speak about how it is for me- or how it feels for me sort of.

I have been in a bit of a grumpy mood for the last few days. Grumpy with everyone really or really more grumpy with everyone in the house actually. I don’t show that much of it in school.

So we tried last night and again this morning to figure out what was bugging me, and i think we have put it down to just some of maybe normal teenage complications.

Because i have aspergers, so that i learned about people i have always had to talk to my parents so that they could give me some people advice. like if they say one thing…does it mean what i think it does? and usually the answer is no!

So it’s…

View original 837 more words


teenaged complications.

Being teenaged has LOTS of complications – i think for EVERYBODY!

but i can only really speak about how it is for me- or how it feels for me sort of.

I have been in a bit of a grumpy mood for the last few days. Grumpy with everyone really or really more grumpy with everyone in the house actually. I don’t show that much of it in school.

So we tried last night and again this morning to figure out what was bugging me, and i think we have put it down to just some of maybe normal teenage complications.

Because i have aspergers, so that i learned about people i have always had to talk to my parents so that they could give me some people advice. like if they say one thing…does it mean what i think it does? and usually the answer is no!

So it’s kinda like when we chat about stuff we are trying to retrace my steps in a weird way – we go though everything to see why i might be annoyed about things, and usually then something does show up.

My teachers at my meeting the other week seek that I seem to be emotionally very mature. I find that slightly funny and had a giggle, cos the reason i do probably seem like that is that i have learned long ago to be MYSELF in school and outside, and that causes me to have no real social  problems.

  • being me. I am quite comfortable being me, and not pretending to be cooler. I know peer pressure to go to discos used to be bad, until we talked about it, and i decided it wasn’t for me. Will not yet anyway.
  • in my class for me it helped to TELL them early on that i was autistic – Cos i remember even at primary school i was a bit awkward and nervous about people who didn’t know me. But now, my class know i am a bit different and they respect that. I sometimes get slagged about girls liking me, or me liking girls but nothing too bad, The boys are FINE about me being different and I am glad I am different too.
  • B.O. some people don’t mean to but they have a problem with body Odour. I am totally freaky about being smelly, and I probably over do the showering and the spray but it’s EVERYWHERE with teenagers. I find it difficult to cope with smells.
  • Teeth!. i have a bit of a problem here. i HATE bad breath and i am fearful of  having bad breath. So even without noticing I could be in the bathroom and notice i am cleaning my teeth. Mum and dad freak out about this cos they say it could become an obsession. So i do try to stop.
  • parents: it gets “uncool” for some people to need help, or even to like their parents. For me my parents ( or mainly my mum) is still a bit of an encyclopedia – they can still read me when i am upset about stuff, and i still need them to explain how other kinds of people think!
  • social networking: freaks me still. I still don’t use Facebook. but i use some networking where i can only interact with people one to one so there is no difficulty in groups.  But i am still even aware that some people even act different on Facebook. I don’t want to go down that road.
  • Clothes: it suddenly becomes important in your teens to have LOTS of fashionable clothes. Football tops and trackies are not the most fashionable things any more  :( what you wear matters – you don’t want to look “chavvy” but you don’t want to look VERY formal, so you try to get it right. i feel really sorry for girls. There is even more pressure on them to look good.
  • looking right: matters to some people. Girls seem to have to try to look older that they really are, like putting on tonnes of makeup all the time. When they are dressed up they seem to have to look perfect. like models. This can lead to putting a LOT of pressure on some people…like anorexia and problems like that. We know about how hard that is as my sister was bullied by a few horrible people and she became anorexic. She is grand now- well better i suppose :)
  • acne: i HATE even mentioning this. i have pretty bad acne and i HATE it. i try to cheer myself up that i will be finished before my friends are with theirs. But the cheering up doesn’t really help. I feel very self conscious of it. And can i say to tease someone about spots is HORRIBLE. they can’t do anything about them, and it is not their fault. It is nothing to do with hygiene either.
  • pressure: i LOVE hanging out with my friends – MALE and FEMALE. I would hate to feel awkward with my friends because of teasing, about who fancies who, and I just refuse to let that mess up my friendships.  Yes i can see when people are pretty. but that doesn’t mean I want to marry them!… it is just part of how they look, like what colour their eyes are. That whole slag/tease thing is NOT good. people get awkward, say things, or feel upset, get hurt. My answer for now is going to be: “i don’t see why we can’t just be friends”…cos that is what i want!…and i do not want other people messing that.

NOW i actually do NOT feel grumpy.
so i guess that means that talking is good. It helps me to calm down and to make decisions about what annoys me and to know a few things i need to say for future problems.

by Fionnteenaged





Temple Grandin on why parents should not give up on their child…she USED to be nonverbal



I was so excited when i knew i was able to meet Temple Grandin.

I had never met anyone so famous.

Or anyone who i looked up to so much!

I was so so excited.

She is the most famous Aspie and i have heard so much about her all my life – or all of life since i understood i had Aspergers!

We love her film about her life and mam reads her books.

Her favourite is “Bright NOT Broken” – where she talks about the ability of having Asperger’s not the stiff you can’t do…cos you should never stop realising that you are different…nothing wrong with you!

It was going to be perfect…but

there was a BIG problem. I was so sick today

I have a very sore head and am actually throwing up a lot.

But when we arrived- even after the sick stops we heard the helicopter.

Temple was arriving.

She was meeting 3 families with autistic children.

She was REALLY nice- exactly like she always sounds.

When she came in she could see i was sick …and her scientist head started searching for reasons why.

She kept staring at me asking questions about my illness.

She really loves solving things.

She gave us all autographs…new books and we got pictures of her with out failies and us.

IMG-20130406-00419i was really disappointed because i was sick, and i couldn’t do much:(

BUT she was really interested which i loved.

She was really really good with peopl- i was surprised at that!

She chatted away about us, and our strengths…she was really nice!


We knew  she was reall into cows, and kind treatment of cows, so we had got a lady to make her a special cow brooch.

I think she liked it!…

because she put it on straight away!

It was a really special day – even if i was so sick and i know i am very lucky!


i hope she comes back again and i have a chance to be a bit brighter and enjoy her properly.

from Fionn

I have also watched “Temple Grandin “the movie…and i thought that it was WOW!

I already knew who she was but i had actually never watched the full film.

Mumhas read me some things that she has written, and i thought WOW – this lady is like me in some ways. The book we liked best was “Bright not Broken” – beacause the title is kind of about me almost. About how others have treated me – but mostly my really gret family. I do feel there is NOTHING wrong with me.

That’s why “different not less” is my favourite phrase in the film.

Its similar to my phrase “autistic and proud” so i really like how she feels.

She now loves the way she is and she doesn’t want to be CURED, like I don’t.

I don’t anyone who has seen her film or read her books would want to be cured.

She used her autism to think about the things she was really into, and to become a specialist inside  the world of what she is interested in – kind animal treatment.

She didn’t pretend it was easy to grow up and have an easy school life…she was herself all the time:

  • she thought different
  • she took things up literally
  • she hated contact – which i found sad – cos i think everyone needs a hug sometimes.
  • her classmates treted her really badly
  • because she was different
  • but she was smart.
  • I loved at the end of college that she had made friends respect her – so she showed how far she had came.
  • One of her best ever teachers said that every challenge is like “a new door” to walk through
  • After she got this challenge she would accept any challenge and rise up to it!
  • Even when people tried to stop her  she would be determined to still do it.
  • she seemed to understand animals more than people – when i was very young i didn’t really understand either!
  • when people bullied her, or put her down she grew stronger cos she learned from what happened each time.
  • She was very very hard on herself when she couldn’t do things and i think that showed she KNEW she could do it and that is a really good thing. It made me proud to be autistic.
  • i thought it was funny when she wanted to talk about things that interested her and not anyone else, cos that kind of reminded me of how my mind works sometimes.
  • She realised – and only a few of the teachers did, that she had her own ways of learning. but she always GOT there….like my phrase about joining the dots…in the wrong order but i get the picture right in the end.
  • The way she kept pictures in her head reminds me of me and me DVD clips and things…i can see them so clearly.
  • Her sensory issues were very like mine and the film did show them well – like how tiny noises can feel really loud, and how material can’t be scratchy.
  • The HUG machine was brilliant. i would LOVE one…but i kind of have one – my MUM…when i ask for a squish.
  • The melt downs were really well done- when it showed the noises getting too loud, and people crowding her and it was really effective. it was really how it feels! Her mum knew she needed space to cool down before she talked to her. That was well done too.
  • i liked the way that she also didn’t “get” death – its a confusing thing for me.
  • She was a really outside the box thinker. All the other people thought she was silly and weird but all the time she was more CARING than all of them .
  • She saw things differently – she even got down and pretended to be a cow to see things from their perspective.
  • Thats why i think you HAVE to have aspergers to be a genius at it!
  • The end of the film made me feel really “emotious” – I was so really happy and proud when she stood up and spoke, and when she thanked her mum for helping her progress and never giving up nd making her as independent as she can be. That is exactly wht my parents do for me…and it helps so much.
  • It was a really feel good film cos i could understand it ALL
  • so could all of my family
  • my dad was a bit teary at the end…so he got it too!

I hope that i can have a really good life like she has.

She gets to work at something she enjoys and thats what i want.

Temple Grandin you are really a inspiring ambassador.


From Fionncow


how i learned to MIX with people

how i learned to MIX with people?

for me it was NOT easy to understand people. And it takes times.

And i don’t think you ever you ever really stop learning about people.

normal people know how to MIX easily.

they know how to make friends.

they know what to say and the then know when to say it and everything.

for autistic people it is difficult.

when i go into a room i still can something that is wrong – i mean something that is unrelated to what they were saying, or related to the situation. Like i want to talk ALL THE TIME about things that interest me but might not interest everybody. BUT i try not to, and sometimes i need reminders from mum or dad that i am being a bit ME…unrelated… and it’s ok to say it, cos i have it, a bit autistic. The wee reminder is usually enough to make me “shh” far a while – but if i am feeling uncomfortable i might try it again.

Its just about learning the rules of people.

Most people are born knowing how to:

  • BE in conversation,
  • how to talk to people
  • where to look in conversation
  • what to look like (like not awkward)
  • what to about about .
  • they know what to say that sounds ok to friends of their own age and to adults they meet at school and in other places.

i know i wasn’t MADE like that. for me when i was VERY young i didn’t know HOW to make friends. A crowd of people felt overwhelming . I may not be able to go into the room at all. I used to find a spot on my own and that was easier.

When I went to school first, I was what you might call a loner. My class didn’t know about me, they thought I was just weird, so that didn’t make it any easier. So mummy and daddy got me tested for autism, which suddenly made it easier for US in my family to understand. I felt for the first year that i was a piece of JIGSAW in the wrong box.Fermanagh-20130312-00165

That improved when mum and dad made the decision for me to repeat nursery and they started to try to help me understand myself and to learn to make friends.

It wasn’t easy. It took 3 years of my life to learn to make friends. That was my IEP- my education plan.

The repeating the year made it really made it better because I knew somebody in the class really well. She was a family friend.  Jenny introduced me to her friends, so for the first year or two I just stayed with Jenny, Zoë (my cousin joined the class)  and spent play time the girls.

I used to think boys looked scary and big because they played quite aggressively, so in P2 mom and the teacher got me first to play with one boy- Mattie, with my classroom assistant watching and helping me. We picked Matthew because he seemed nice and friendly. Lorna used to bring us out of class to do wee jobs, or plat in sand-tray , or play football.  and it wasn’t easy but I got used to it. Soon I had a small good group of friends i felt comfortable with.

When i was about 9 or 10 in P5 my ADHD was a bit more noticeable – I was never badly behaved but I started to get unorganised and a bit sloppy at looking after my stuff ad fidgetty to sit beside and talkative. So i knew i was annoying people a bit. When i got a bit bigger i wanted to extend the group of people i felt comfortable to hang out with. So i though it would help people if they understood a bit about my autism -so they would be able to “get me”- and maybe keep an eye for me getting into difficulties with older pupils. So In small groups I took out my friends and Mr Murphy (the Principal) and me told the group more about my autism.

Just the main points at that time:

  1. i am not sick
  2. i am able to do all the things they can but i am wired differently
  3. i fidget.
  4. i sit on my right knee with the left up.
  5. or SOMETIMES if i am feeling weird i put the knees the other way round.
  6. i don’t mean to be talkative or fidgety.
  7. i can upset if i don’t understand why someone shouts at me.
  8. i am very untidy.
  9. sometimes i don’t understand what people say- as they use sarcasm, idioms and metaphors and similes etc
  10. told the clues to look out for which meant i was in need of help – like twitchy mouth, lots and lots of fidgeting, talking even faster. tapping hands or feet, walking away from a group.

At that stage they were fine with it, cos they were my close friends. That made me feel protected and safe too.

My mum and dad were understood how hard it was for an aspergers boy to play a TEAM sport…because of the difficulty socialising and also close contact was not easy. BUT hey decided to MAKE me do it. cos it would be better for me in the long term.

Mum used to keep asking what do i want ME to be like when i am a teenager, and i always said “i want to be able to hang out with my friends and all” so then she’d say so how would i be able to do that if i  didn’t know how to get on with them.

When my parents wanted me to start Gaelic we decided to explain to some of the players from other classes and the coach about my autism. Now they are fine with it too. Now I can easily and comfortably go with teams out on trips to play games. But at first i was finding it REALLY difficult to deal with people shouting at me on a Gaelic pitch. In my head it meant they hated me. So i would come off very upset and mum would explain it was about the football- maybe just a bad shot, and NOT about them liking or not liking me. So i would try again.

It also wasn’t long before i realised that being OUTFIELD was quite difficult for me because and the contact and the tackling. (i have now improved a LOT at that )…BUT it was a great idea for me to decide to be in GOALS.


in goals aspergers is an advantage as i don’t feel much pain, and also i don’t feel much fear so i dive for any ball. And now i have got much more comfortable with my group/squad

in P7 i could manage people well enough to go to Manchester with my year group and was away from home for 4 days!  I was proud of myself. I stayed in a room with my closest two friends. Obviously Lorna was there if i needed her. But i did much better that i thought.

moving to grammar school was scary. I was going to be one of the new boys and i knew hardly anybody else in the YEAR i was going into. I was nervous …like 9 or 10 out of 10 nervous!

so we had to plan things to HELP me. We met with the Special needs coordinator in the school. And my form teacher. I was allowed to be in a class with my two friends who were also going up to St Micks. I met my new Classroom assistant Mrs H. i got to know her a bit- well enough. But i really missed Lorna!

In my new school I recognised a few boys from other towns who I played matches against- so i felt quite safe.

Really early in the year my form teacher Mrs Nethercott played this game that we had agreed she would do – in order for me to be able to tell my class about my autism…..where we had to say something about ourselves that made us different. I said I had Asperger’s – one boy said he had a cousin who was autistic and non-verbal and nobody else really minded.

i still learn about people in every new situation.

i have a new classroom assistant Mrs D who i have learned to know well cos i can tell her things when i am in bother, confused or upset about a test or a situation i found tough. She doesn’t have to do things  FOR me but she is aware of when i am annoyed about something. I feel a lot more secure with her around although i don’t have to walk about beside her. She KNOWS my disorganisation and other things!

BUT one of the tricks i do have to say that helped me, was that i take part in group things like after school activities. At first when mum said i had to stay for choir and band, i whinged and complained. and was gonna feel such a geek cos i was it would be uncool to be into music. I was WRONG. there were loads of older boys at music after-schools, and they were fine and friendly when they met me on the corridors and that helps me feel safe too. And NOBODY takes the Mick from me doing music.

I have a few close friends, a few friends and few boys who I prefer to avoid.

Sometimes I find being in groups tricky. Cos I find it hard to just create a conversation with more than one person. When I notice that happening I walk away. Or if isee them look at me funny i know i am talking weird ME stuff so i shut up.

I am 14 now:

  • I have learnt “banter”.
  • Its kind of a bit of fun.
  • A bit of slagging but it doesn’t really mean anything nasty
  • I have now got to understand some idioms and sarcasm but am still AWFUL at that stuff.
  •  i know now that i do need to be close friends with everybody…but just really to get on with most people is pretty good.

Overall mum says you should just have a group of close friends who will look out for you. But you need a few that you just have craic with. And its okay to just manage some more tricky other people. But  sometimes I still talk to mum about the friends groups and all, and I want to keep trying mixing cos when I am 18 I will have a bunch of deadly mates to go to discos with.

I amn’t ready yet to do the girlfriend relationship thing, but that will come soon. And I guess we will have a lot of chatting to do before that. But anyway for now….i have friends …and that’s the important bit!

I did the local Pantomime for the 3rd year in a row.

First time mum said it i was NOT doing she brought me out with her to sit and ddo messages… the next year i went into it, cos all the people were LOVELY to me. I found it really fun just to be there.

In panto there are about 50 kids- all from different schools, boys and girls of different ages. And i still am good friends with some of them from the first time i did it, and we all keep in touch. And the friends part is easy in the panto cos you do ALL have to wear crap costumes, and make-up and do embarrassing choreography. So nobody laughs at anybody else. It’s just all friends like.

Next weekend we have the end of panto Party, and i can’t WAIT to see everyone again.

So that proves i have come a LONG way learning how to mix with people, cos i find myself dying to meet them :)

So it is definitely possible to learn how to make friends.

It is not EASY…but i think it is the right thing to do…even if it is hard at the time.



this blog was written as a favour to Adam harris of

i hope that it helps other children with aspergers to get along with people, and their parents to feel that it is not so scary to have aspergers, as i have aspergers and i am usually very happy! 

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writing for

I met Adam Harris when he invited me to the launch in March.
We had been in contact before that but never met face to face.
Adam was going to be on TV on Saturday so he asked me to write something for the page.
I watch him on the interview and he did really really well – I still love the idea of him going running round the studio after.:)

Today he put up HALF of the post. It was about how i learned to make friends.
thanks Adam,
from Fionn 

Adam posted part ONE last week. The Primary School Years… 3 years dedicated on learning how to MIX …was so worth it!

and today put up part two about being older
More on what we decided it was WORTH investing the most attention to
How to learn to MIX with people…it is ONGOING
This is the secondary school years….