My Autistic Brother, Rhys

I'm Carys, a 14 year old from Cornwall, UK. My 10 year old brother Rhys has always been 'different'. He's always been slower learning simple tasks compared to other children and has always had problems socialising. He's never been able to interact with other people 'normally', and usually forms friendships with young children or babies, or animals.

I remember when he was about 7 hearing him talking to our dog, Alfie, saying he was his only friend because no one else liked him. He used to talk to Alfie quite a lot, especially when his Dad became an alcoholic.

Two years ago, we noticed Rhys kept having daydreams- like he was in another world. They would last for about 10-30 seconds, and during that time you could do anything or say anything to him and would get no reaction or acknowledgement, and when he 'woke up', he would of no memory of what just happened.

One day, we were walking back from school, and he had one of his 'daydreams', except this one was different- he kept on walking. It was the same as the others, he would have no acknowledgement what was happening, and no memory of it either. We didn't notice he was having a 'daydream', he was walking in front of us, and so we assumed he was fine. It was only when he walked out onto the road when there was a van coming that we realised he was having a 'daydream'.

Luckily the van stopped in time, and Rhys didn't suffer any injuries.

The next week he was diagnosed with Epilepsy.

For a while now, we've suspected Rhys had Autism, and his doctor is also certain of it. He's undergoing tests to find out where on the spectrum his case sits. We've been told that in some cases, the person doesn't fit into a certain type of autism, and that's the way it's looking for Rhys.

Every day something happens that makes me realise his case is getting more severe as the days go on, and sometimes it feels like there's no one to talk to that will understand. I've suffered this for a few months now, and it's starting to effect my social life (well, the little I have of one. My friends can't come to my house when Rhys is here as he doesn't like other people in the house, and i'm often needed to stay at home to look after him. I have another younger brother, Dylan, who's a year younger than Rhys that has behavioral problems, and I often feel guilty when I leave her in the house on her own with them because it's hard to look after them both on your own).

My teachers and friends have noticed a difference in me, but none of them understand how draining it can be to have an autistic brother. I'm tired 24/7, getting little sleep, lonely, and depressed.

It's why i've joined this site- to hopefully meet other young people like me to help myself feel happy again, and understand how to live with an autistic sibling, and hopefully help you too.


CarysHill CarysHill
13-15, F
Sep 15, 2012