“I Can’t Stop!” A story about Tourette Syndrome
by Holly l Niner and illustrated by Meryl Treatner
Nathan was told off by his parents for continually winking, in class he continually sniffed. A couple of weeks later his head would snap down to one side and his best friend didn’t understand. Nathan was scared and confused, sometimes he knew it was happening, other times he didn’t, and it was especially embarrassing when other kids started laughing at him. When his parents took him eventually to a special doctor it was finally diagnosed as Tourette Syndrome, a mostly genetic disorder. After it had been clearly explained to them, and how they, and Nathan deal with it, Nathan became brave enough to tell his friend, and along with his Mum told the class. Nathan found that once others knew about his condition they understood, even the teacher looked for ways to help Nathan, and when other kids made fun of him he wasn’t worried, because best of all his friend understood.
I was returning some books to the library and as I was talking to the librarian, of all things about “Wild Orchid”, I spotted this on the shelf. I thought immediately of my Children’s Hub friend, Patricia, her lovely new blog http://childrensbooksheal.com/ with her focus on children and teens with special needs. Along with her broad range I felt sure she would love to know about Holly and her books. Holly’s son has OCD obsessive-compulsive disorder – see her book “Mr Worry”. She not only beautifully explained about Tourette Syndrome but shows children how to be understanding and caring to those who have it. Her note to parents and teachers in the front of this book educates us. There is no cure for TS, they appear as tics or jerks or twitches, and they may vary over hours, days or weeks. Some 20 percent of children have Tic‘s some not even know it, and therefore are never treated, or known. Understanding and accepting it is a neurologic disorder like migraines, seizures or autism, it does not stop most affected people from having the jobs and life they want. Her website is http://www.hollyniner.com/index.htm