Jade Chapman on the inspiration for 'Understanding Oscar'

July 22nd, 2021

By Jade Chapman


Understanding Oscar’ was inspired by my amazingly beautiful middle son and the challenges my husband and I have faced in helping our other children understand and accept Oscar's different way of interacting with the world.

In the early days, after receiving Oscar’s autism spectrum diagnosis, I searched high and low to find a good resource to help me explain what autism was to Oscar’s older brother, along with why it affects different people in different ways.

After choosing to read a book which resonated best to our family – one where the child was non-verbal – Banjo sat at the end in silence.  He was thinking.  Processing.  And then the questions came.  This sparked our first of many open discussions about autism and I feel the first time he really started to understand his little brother.  He then asked me to read the book again!

At this stage Banjo and Oscar attended the same day care centre together.  As Oscar was the only child with autism I created a book that Banjo could share with the educators and children which would help them better understand Oscar, and his little quirks.  ‘My little brother, Oscar’ was well received and a copy permanently left at the centre for new educators and children to read.  We also kept a couple of copies at home to share with family and friends when they were around.

Having seen firsthand how valuable education can be in helping children like Oscar be understood and accepted for who they are by their family, peers and society as a whole I wanted to create a children’s book from my own experience in order to reach out and help all families with children who have special needs and to allow others to understand the difficulties but also the great joy and love that life can bring.

Behind every story is an inspiration. Oscar, my silent warrior, this book is for you.  Different, not less.

 

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Tags: author, individuality, parenting, publishing

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