Thoughts by Orla Barker for Autism Acceptance Week.

 

My name is Orla Barker I’m 21 years old. My little brother Oscar is 9 and I was 11 when I became an Autism Sibling.

Having Oscar enter our lives has changed our family from what I thought it would be, but absolutely for the better. I was already a big sister to my brother lorcan but mine and Oscar’s relationship was very different. My relationships with both my brothers are very unique which is very special.

I knew very little about autism and neurodiversity as a whole before Oscar was diagnosed. Learning about this has made me a better person, friend and sibling. I also have more awareness about my own mind and my sensory needs.

Oscar has taught me so much about the importance of kindness in the world and how easy it is to be kind, yet how so many people are not kind. Being kind to someone, being thoughtful or understanding towards them will affect their day so much and it takes seconds.

Because of Oscar, knowing him and watching him grow is the reason kindness is such a big part of what I stand for. I care for him so much and being his big sister I see so many special moments in his development that make me so proud. I hope that awareness is something everyone can gain because it can help people be understood for who they are which is someone so unique and special, and it could also help you find out more about yourself too.

Orla Barker

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