Andrew and Kerry Van Der Walt
Age of parents:
Age: 4 Years
Diagnosis of child:
Max has a few delays in a few areas - speech, toilet training, food and clothing sensitivties. He falls in the ADHD / Spectrum camp.
What are the biggest challenges facing your child on a daily basis?
This is very new to us, we are finding our way and learning a tremendous amount as we go, the picture isn’t entirely clear which make’s it more difficult for us. We are also reminding ourselves not to lose our boy in the panic of getting a diagnosis and interventions, there is a lot of panic around at the moment.
What are the happiest moments you have with your child on a daily basis?
The more relaxed we are, the more relaxed he is and that pretty much determines what kind of day we are going to have.
Are you married?
Has your special needs child had an effect on your marriage?
Yikes, neither of us saw this one coming, so we are in a sort of shock and we are coping with the news and changes that this diagnosis will bring to our lives. It’s pretty exhausting stuff but we are in it together.
Are your family and friends supportive?
They are also in a bit of a shock to hear of Max’s challenges, i think everyone is processing what this means. If they are quieter than usual it’s because they are feeling for us, giving us space.
What has your child taught you about yourself, both positively and negatively?
Max will be who Max will be - we just need to work him out and we are up for that. This diagnosis is new to him and us but I’m confident that we are going to get a system working around him that helps him to grow and flourish. This isn’t a death sentence.
What is your dream for your child?
We aren’t looking ahead, we are living in the now - learning and consulting with professionals to work out how to help Max manage his difficulties.