Having a sibling on the autism spectrum

Lucy: Interview 11

Female
Age at interview: 18

Brief outline: Lucy's older brother, aged twenty-two, has been diagnosed with autism. She also has a sister who is thirteen years old.

Background: Lucy is a full-time student and lives away from home during term time. Ethnicity/nationality: White British.

Audio & video

Lucy’s brother is twenty-two and is four years older than her. He was diagnosed with autism when she was a toddler and, consequently, she cannot remember anything about the diagnosis. She says she has grown up always knowing he had autism and recalled that he had had problems at school.
 
According to Lucy, she and her brother often do not “see eye-to-eye” and have many arguments. These can be over things like sharing the computer or what to watch on TV. She thinks this is normal brother-sister conflict, but also it differs from that of other siblings because “he won’t always find a compromise” and cannot see things from her perspective.
 
Lucy’s experience with her brother has had a positive impact on her as it has made her “a lot more aware of disabilities”. Having briefly attended a support group for siblings in her local area when she was about nine, she thinks that a support group for older children, who are more aware about autism, would be more appropriate. 
 
 

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