Rian, age 4 – Speech & Language Difficulties, Autism Spectrum Disorder

My son, age 4, was non-verbal, showing some characteristics of Autism. He was in his own world, anti-social, and would often get very upset for no apparent reason, spend a lot of his time humming to himself, to name a few. I came across the Cluas.ie website and felt that he needed this to help him. So, after talking to Pascal, my husband and I started the Cluas programme without any delay. 

Within days of the first session, we noticed big changes in him. The humming was gone. He became more focused and aware of everything happening around him. It is as if he has come out of a dream. He heard us every time we called him. He would respond to us all the time, anywhere we are. He became curious about everything, even at school. Most of all, speech started coming. Initially this was just single words. He was not upset like before because he was expressing himself using his words. 

Now he is happier being around his big sister and even playing with her. Interaction has started at school as well. He got a girlfriend (!) recently, which is an amazing thing that we did not believe was going to happen. He is even interacting with other adults in the school. He likes running around and playing catch with everybody in the park. He is listening to his teacher, sharing toys with his friends and even knows most of his friends’ names. He feels more grown up now, and he is even comforting his big sister when she is crying. 

The most difficult part was to get him to keep the headphones on. When Pascal explained the program to us, we said he is not going to do that for sure. But we were determined to change him. So we changed ourselves first by becoming more firm, deciding to stick to whatever we were telling him to do. 

The crying was always breaking our heart but we just kept going. The more he progressed, the more we got the courage to stick to the program. Now, I have my son, who is saying full sentences, wants to go out to play, is always looking for us, and is a happy child around his family, and no longer in his own little world. 

Just a message to parents out there, don’t think twice about the program if you want to get your child back. It is a very hard path, but you will eventually get there. Where there is a will, there is always a way.  

Siobhan and Kevin, June 2014 – Dublin