Case Studies & Feedback

Tara is eleven and has autism. She does not speak, though she is good at signing and communicating in other ways. Tara is described as a ‘runner’: when she sees an object that interests her, she runs to it, no matter what the danger or where it is.

Tara did not understand why her parents did not live together anymore but she did remember her dad. Tara’s mother was very nervous about bringing her to In-sight, because nowhere else had been able to ‘hold’ Tara. Dad was very worried too because he had not seen Tara for a long time and was also not sure whether he could cope.

In-Sight made special security arrangements and had extra staff to safeguard against Tara running off. A staff member also learned some signing so she could help a little with communicating with Tara. A room with little distraction was prepared for them.

Tara and dad met for the first time for almost 2 years. At first Tara did not react much and the dad felt very awkward. Dad remembered that Tara liked physical play and, encouraged by the worker, they gradually worked it out. Tara showed a lot of pleasure at being with dad (unusual with autism). Mum was also happy because her daughter was accepted non-judgementally and treated with respect. Five further sessions were arranged – all successful – and Tara’s CAFCASS officer promised to find ways for the restored relationship with her father to continue to develop.