Support in a safe, private and confidential group

A haircut

It’s fast approaching the Easter holidays here and I’m not sure what I’m dreading more: being surrounded by copious amounts of chocolate (for some reason it tastes nicer when in egg form) and haircuts. Not for me, I might add – I don’t complain about being sat in a chair and pampered for three hours – but for my boys…

Now, Juan would have his hair cut every other day, with no qualms. Number 3 only needs a shave around his man bun, now and then, but number 2 HATES having a haircut. Having ASD means that being touched in any capacity, is unacceptable. Completely and utterly out of the question. Our last trip to the barber, was eventful…

Our normal barber was full, and given that my musketeers’ hair grows out, rather than long, I had no option but to try elsewhere. I’d only just picked all the boys up from school and number 2 was tired and hungry: I wish I’d have been able to try again on a day when he wasn’t already narky. We walked into the new barbershop and Juan went first, to show 2 that it was ok. 2, at this point, decided that I was worthy of a call to ChildLine for not letting him grow long, greasy, death metal hair and for this, he was going to make me suffer. He sat in the chair and shut down. No eye contact or response when I asked if he was ok or tried to throw him a smile. Mr barber man was relatively quick, trying to (unsuccessfully) strike up some chit chat with 2. This was never going to happen but bless him for trying.

He finished his cut and 2 stood up, with a face that said, ‘if I could pick up the pool table in the middle of this shop, it’d be going through that window’. I was still in full-on reassurance mode (making things worse, as it went) and I wanted him to know how smart he looked. ‘Oh buddy! You look lovely! What do you say?’. Big. Mistake. 🤦🏼‍♀️ I’d asked a brutally honest child how he felt about a haircut I already knew he didn’t want. Even so, ‘I LOOK LIKE A PILE OF WANK!’ was not the answer I’d expected… the barber looked at me, mortified and asked ‘what did he say?!’ at which point 2 glared in his direction and growled ‘THANK YOU!’, before storming out. Dave* didn’t know whether to piss himself laughing or hug me. Instead, Captain Sensible took over as he pointed to the door closing behind 2 as he shot down the street and shouted ‘Go! I’ll pay!’ 3 is not quite as sensible as Dave, and some might say he’s like his dad in that he’d laugh if his arse was on fire. So, imagine my joy when he’s barely able to say anything other than ‘pile of wank!’ amidst his fall-down-laughing giggles.

So, if you see us over the break, please don’t comment on 2’s close resemblance to Worzel Gummidge: I’m aware and with this incident as the alternative, I couldn’t care less 🤦🏼‍♀️

*Name changed

How we helpOur Programmes

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For Parents

Early bird plus programme

Early Bird Plus is aimed at parents and carers of autistic children aged five and under nine. The programme combines the supportive dynamic of group sessions with the individualised, one-to-one support of home visits*.

The Early Bird Plus programme consists of eight sessions, each of which are 2.5 hours in length, and two home visits*. Programmes are run for up to six families at a time. Each family is allocated three places on the Early Bird programme: two for parents or carers and one for an accompanying professional.

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For Parents

Early bird teen life programme

Teen Life is a six-session programme for parents/carers of young people aged 10 to 16 years on the autism spectrum.

Programmes are run for up to six families at a time. Each family is allocated three places on the Teen Life programme: two for parents or carers and one for an accompanying professional.

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For Parents

Nurture programme: parenting puzzles

The programme is intended to provide adults and children with the understanding, skills and ability to lead emotionally healthy lives, build resilience, empathy, self-esteem and support positive relationships and to inspire positive changes.

The 10-week Nurturing Programme is effective in universal settings and is also used by practitioners to deliver targeted support as part of specialist interventions such as: working with parents in prison, and parents whose children have special needs

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For Parents

Lego based therapy

Lego Based Therapy is a Social development programme for children with ASD and related conditions such as ADHD. It is now used in school settings and is often recommended by professionals as an intervention for children with social communication needs.

We have a 2 week programme to train parents to be able to use Lego Based Therapy at home with their children.

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For Parents

Parent & carer wellbeing programme

Most parents put the needs of their child first.  Parents of children with Additional Needs have even less time and energy to focus on their own physical and mental health & wellbeing.

CBS aim to shine the light on parental mental health and alleviate some of the problems by offering parent led respite activities, specialised counselling and wellbeing workshops, such as, relaxation techniques, yoga and mindfulness addressing stress and anxiety.

Parents’ Guide to the Galaxy – A six week long series of workshops and information sessions to encourage parental self-care and emotional well-being.

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For Parents

Early intervention behaviour programme

This 6-week programme, aimed at parents who have children with behaviour that challenges and have no diagnosis.

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For Parents

The Parent Factor in ADHD

The Parent Factor in ADHD is a 9-week programme for parent carers who have a child diagnosed with ADHD.

The programme starts with a pre-group meeting which allows the group participants to meet with the facilitator. This serves a number of functions, but most importantly it gives parents the opportunity to talk (as much or as little as they wish) about their experiences, including any concerns they may have.

Participants then attend a weekly series of six, two-hour long sessions. Each session has specific aims and is led by a CBS facilitator.

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For Schools and Organisations

Mission Incredible! – Teacher training package

A specialised training package designed to give teachers and teaching assistants key skills and techniques for coping with children with additional needs.

This training package can be tailored to the specific needs of each school.

Schools Programmes are free this year, thanks to external funding. Please contact CBS to discuss your needs. 

For Schools and Organisations

Restorative approach programme – Linking parents and schools

We offer a Restorative Approach Programme, building a bridge between parents with children with additional needs and their schools to support a positive relationship and mutual understanding.

Schools Programmes are free this year, thanks to external funding. Please contact CBS to discuss your needs.