Joy Hurcom, pictured at the Community Hub yesterday, would love a free massage and is calling for more pediatricians in Gladstone.
Joy Hurcom, pictured at the Community Hub yesterday, would love a free massage and is calling for more pediatricians in Gladstone. Jen Tybell

Family fight Asperger Syndrome

JOY Hurcom juggles her family's farm life with caring for her daughter who is diagnosed with Asperger Syndrome, and all she wants is the occasional free massage.

“My daughter has Asperger Syndrome, which has a lot to do with socialising with people; they don't have the skills,” Ms Hurcom said.

Asperger Syndrome is a neurological condition which impairs the ability to interact and causes those with Asperger's to live with repetitive routines or ritualised patterns of behaviour.

Joy's daughter finds it difficult to go to school and interact with other students.

“She has problems going to school, socialising, change and new people. She'd be fine if she didn't have to talk to anyone,” Joy said.

Her daughter was always shy in school, but Joy did her own research.

“At school they just said she was shy. But I knew it had to be more than that,” Joy said.

“She wasn't sleeping much and was having panic attacks.” Joy has to deal with her emotional strain as well as supporting her daughter's emotional needs.

“We didn't know why she was crying. She didn't know why she was crying. She is a lot better since she has gone on medication.

“It's emotionally draining and stressful.

“But they are really special; you can learn so much from them.”

Joy would like to see more specialists in the area.

“Gladstone needs more pediatricians, respite and occupational therapists. Some free massages. They fix everything for me.”



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