Hoffmann Foundation for Autism
1,509 members296 posts

How can I get my 11 year old tested and by whom!

My son is 11,he is dyslexic,he finds writing difficult and some reading,but is a wizz at maths,mind full of knowledge,collects Furbies,used to be so engrossed in Thomas the tank engine as a small child,he only likes what he calls comfy pants ie jogging bottoms,he only eats certain foods and won't try new things,I've tried getting help from a dietitian when we lived in Australia she came back with she couldn't help as it looked like the diet of a autistic child.He flaps his arms when excited,hates hand driers in public toilets,he watches tv at a angle,the list goes on,we saw a paed in Australia and said no because he didn't tick all her boxes.He has a TA at primary school and I've been told he still needs lots of 1-1,apart from his dyslexia will he get the help he needs.Who do I need to ask,as I've spoke to school,but don't feel anything is been done,he starts secondary in September.Thanks

8 Replies

Your son shows numerous traits of Asbergers. He already has Dyslexia one of the associated illnesses. The picky eating is due to the over/ under sensitivity to food. My youngest has the same issues, even to the stage if packaging changes won't eat it. He eats about four or five things, very limited. The clothes again due to clothes being uncomfortable on the skin. Hand flapping another issue.Excellent at maths, bet he loves computing as well. The noisy hand driers, hypersensitive to noise,

It's all the senses, touch, taste, feeling, smell, etc. Has he any problems with sleep, bedtime , routines all traits. The issue is prediction, they have issues following through as well.

First of all go to your GP armed with all the evidence. He will refer you to CAMHS. That's children's mental health services. Don't panic, it's a neurodevelopmental illness but it's assessed by them. Has anyone else in your family got dyslexia, epilepsy, Tourette's , dyspraxia, goes back to grandparents on both sides. Have you still got school reports those help. Organisational skills how are those? Personal hygiene, brushing teeth, how a outs friends?

Unfortunately it takes ages normally to get diagnosis. The other option if you can afford it is to go private, not sure of cost.

Take absolutely no notice of school. Mine were not diagnosed till 17 and 18. Most experts have a poor understanding and that's goes through all services.

Each case is unique, some will have eating, sleeping issues others won't. Dietician did not pick up eating in mine either. No doubt you have have the norm, it will settle down, it's an age thing, no evidence at school.

Once you get the diagnosis school will help with support. I am not sure what it's called in England but in Scotland it's called Enquire they have all the information about support and what you can ask for. If you look on your council website there should be a link , there will be a specific person you can speak to in the Education Department. Just to give you an idea.


Once you have spoken to your GP make sure you tell the High School, of his issues. Anxiety is one of the biggest issues for Autistic Children . Have you had the opportunity of visiting the school, is it possible to speak to his new guidance teacher once you have been to GP?

Have read The reason I jump, that's very good.


There is lots of information on the National Autistic Society Website, they have folks who can advise you with education and claiming PIP etc.


Good luck, it may seem daunting but you need the diagnosis.



1 like

No problem. You will get the school telling you that there is no evidence at school, he finds his way round here,does not get lost, he can do this , can do that, sadly it's a post code lottery , mine had issues outside school and they took no notice..There was loads of evidence in school reports, missed opportunities , reports which showed blatant evidence sitting in school folders. No one knew the significance of this evidence.

Have you had problems with tummy upsets, it's another issue. I just thought it was the poor diet . Uncontroable laughter , walking on tippy toes, being very blunt, sometimes offensive. He will be like a mini genius in some topics, does he have a routine getting up , leaving the house, does he not like eating with you, may be prefers eating alone?

I give my picky eater his meals at the computer desk, it's all trial and error. I know how difficult it is but I have found the more you make a fuss the less he eats. As mine explained to me food smells nice but when I put it in my my mouth it tastes horrible, bland . Some days he hardly eats other days it's resonable. I found out more boys have eating issues than girls.

What I have found if we are eating out, may be he only wants chips, rather than the norm trying to explain Autism I now say he has a food allergy and can only eat certain things. It helped his confidence. It can also go in the other direction where children eat too much, it can work both ways. Some folks have no issues at all.

Have you tried putting a tent up, it's a safe haven.

Can he ride a bike? One of mine can the other cant. Swimming, one is good the other hopeless. It's putting all the pieces together.

These children have some amazing qualities.

Each case is unique.

Ring GP today, get the ball rolling , the quicker the better.


Hi yes he has GERD or at least we think,the amount of foods that used to make him vomit especially as a baby was unbelievable we've had so many tests,only 1 with results that you could see was his barium meal,which as he turned reflexes straight back up,yet they couldn't say why.Also possible ibs.He learnt to ride a bike by using his sisters balance bike his older brother was nearly 10 and they couldn't get on with stabilisers,he used to love his den under his bed,but since we moved he hasn't got that space.He hasn't got issues about eating with others just certain types of food.I laugh because he tells everyone he only eats Heinz ketchup little does he know for 6 months at least I've been filling the Heinz bottle with Lidl brand and he hasn't realised.He could tell if say Asda own brand but Lidl sauce is as good as Heinz.He is worried he will get lost in big school,he goes to a small catholic school there are only 11 in his year so he is in a 5/6 class not sure how many year 5 so a class of around 22-24 kids.He takes his shoes off,he wiggles in his seat you name it,his nickname is the mini professor and funny enough another teacher called him that in Australia.They know he has quirks but seem to work around him!

1 like

If you decide to try the private route for diagnosis (expensive but quicker than NHS) try contacting the National Autistic Society for a list of people who can help in your area.

1 like

Just as a guide the eldestSchool Doctor then CAMHS failed to recognise any Autism issues between P6, about 10 , to S6 , that's 18. He was eventually diagnosed at 18 by adult services. . The youngest it took around a year to get diagnosis, classroom assesment was cancelled tIme after time. They didn't need that but would they listen, nope.

You could check to see how long it takes in your area first. The NAS are very helpful, if you do Facebook you could also ask on their site. It's amazing who will help you if you ask. Is there are Autistic Parents Suport Groups in your area?

Do your homework first, it could prove expensive .

Your lucky about the food, mine can tell everything, if it's not Birds Eye Cod fish fingers, tried cheaper ones and it's a flat NO.Mine started eating with the family and it detoriated as time went by. The very limited picky diet yes for one of mine the other eats virtually anything. It's the overall picture, each case is unique.

Start keeping a diary as evidence, what his sleeping is like, explain what it's like of a morning getting him to school, especially what he does after school. Video evidence is great if you can achieve that.

Anxiety is a major issue for these children, it's a huge step going from small school to a large one.

Think positive that the support team will be good at the High School and it will only get better.

the thing I found is that no one tells you anything, it was one heck of a steep learning curve.

1 like


My son is exactly like this. Hope it helps. xx


This is a very similar situation to my partners son, I am like you and have tried to push to get some form of diagnosis but his biological parents don't seem to think there are any real issues

Personally although the diagnosis won't change the way he is but to me it gives an indication of what can be improved on and what physically can't ever change because his brain isn't wired up medically the same way ?

As a step parent figure this is very difficult for me as I'm trying to help him yet his parents don't seem to bother , he's also due for high school in sept examples being :-

I recently found out he didn't get his choice of high school and wasn't successful in his appeal, I then found out no one actually even took him any open evenings and his mum just asked what school he wanted to go and filled the form in so his 2nd choice wasn't thought through as theyvjust expected he'd get his 1st, now only one friend from his class a girl is going to his high school which is going to be hard as he struggles to make conversation with new people

He has slept in a double bed with his mum for 2.5 years despite there being a spare room that no one has bothered to sort out !

He doesnt understand irony or sarcasm

He has a monotone voice there's no change in his sound whereas most people have a high voice when excited etc....

He always looks like he's carrying the weight of the world on his shoulders and looks unhappy although he says he isn't

Has no real friends outside of school and never plays out or has friends over

Constantly plays on one his many devices (5) which he brings here for one night

Doesn't seem to understand basic reality concepts or imagine when I try to talk to him very basically about different paths he could choose and the outcomes he would get

He only eats dry crackers or crackers with cheese spread, crisps and cake and biscuits although he will occasionally have yoghurts and the odd fruit no meat or veg at all and he's about 2 stone overweight

Last year I noticed he couldn't use a knife and fork, ride a bike, eats with his mouth open little things you teach from an early age ?

Scared of anything that moves and in some cases doesn't move slugs, greenfly, any fly and goes crazy when one comes near him

The list is endless ......

His biological mum suffers with depression and his dad is workaholic so this may be his unbringing and no one has really equipped him with the tools he needs to grow up properly ?

But how do I know if it's that or genuinely medical which can't be changed no matter how hard you try ?

1 like

You may also like...