Anna Kennedy OBE opens up about how authentic The A Word feels to her

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by Anna Kennedy OBE 

The A Word returned for a second season. and it concludes tonight, Tuesday December 12 at 9.00pm on BBC One.

This will be the final episode out of a total of six.

Its a family drama with a difference. Set in the beautiful Lake District, the six-part series follows the extended Hughes clan, as they discover their youngest, smart and musical Joe, is autistic. It’s a subject matter that has sparked conversion with thousands of British families. But is it authentic?

The show’s second season picks up two years after the first season.
Two years on at 7 Joe has begun to look at the world and finds that he doesn’t fit in.

“Autistic” is a word he has heard now many times. But does he understand what it is and does he want to understand? Is he ready?

Many parents always ask me ‘ when is the right time to share your son or daughters diagnosis with them?’.

In my opinion when you feel it is the right time you know your child best. It is important to work with your son or daughters school and plan as much as possible together to support the child.

It is up to the whole family and the school to help Joe make sense of who he is and support him as much as they can without wrapping him in cotton wool.

I have found the six-part drama a bit of a roller coaster that revisits the very funny, messy, mixed-up lives of the Hughes and Scott families as they struggle to do their best as parents, carers, lovers… and to work out what’s really important in the face of nothing ever feeling normal.

In my opinion ‘Normal’ is overrated.As a family just take it one day at a time some days good some days not so good.

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