One dad's story

Man taping up packing box

A Glenelg father shares his move to Australia with a child with autism

Dr Edwin Lapidario was not worried that his son, Sean Craig, now age 7 was not speaking at age 3. He had a family history of late talkers and assumed Sean Craig would follow suit and start talking when he was ready.

At that time Dr Lapidario and his family were living in the Philippines and preparing to move to Australia. As part of the Australian Visa process the family had medical evaluations and after seeing a series of specialists, Sean Craig was diagnosed with non-verbal autism. This slowed the visa application. After two-years, Dr Lapidario was able to bring his family to Australia.

“It was challenging to be away from my family for so long. I knew Sean Craig would improve if we could all be together. There are also so many more resources in Australia for children with autism than the Philippines.”

“I have seen a dramatic improvement in Sean Craig since we’ve been here in Australia. He’s now able to say a handful of words including “bye-bye”, “bed”, “bath” and best of all “dad”.”

“I learned about Positive Partnerships through a colleague. She had heard great things about the workshops and mentioned it was a free resource. I had been looking for other support groups in my community and knew I could not miss out on this opportunity.”

“Positive Partnerships helped me realise we are not alone in our path. This workshop has connected me with other parents in similar situations and it really helps to talk with others who understand what it’s like having a child with autism.”

“I also wanted to attend the workshop for my other son Savion Nash, 4. He does not have autism but I wanted to find ways to have him better understand his brother. I’m lucky that they have a great relationship, but sometimes when they play together it’s hard for Sean Craig to express his feelings and he can become aggressive and frustrated. I want him to know it’s alright for people to be different and to have compassion for others with autism.

“I would highly recommend Positive Partnerships to other parents. I’ve learned new ways to help Sean Craig when he becomes frustrated and irritated and know this will greatly benefit my family.”

Dr Lapidario recommends Positive Partnerships for parents, educators and medical professionals.

Positive Partnerships portal for parents and educators: login here