Have you ever said: I just wish every professional who works with my child had a child with FASD – so they would GET IT? Well Dr. Vanessa Spiller GETS IT! She is the parent of a young adult with FASD who also happens to be a Clinical Psychologist with over 20 years experience in working therapeutically with disadvantaged young people and families.
She has been a university lecturer and university clinic coordinator but her real passion is in supporting families of young people with FASD. She has presented many lectures, workshops and conference presentations on FASD and she has just published a workbook for parents and carers of young people with FASD called “Explained by Brain”.
In this podcast you get some professional insight (without having to pay a fee), as she shares tips, strategies and advice - parent to parent.
Now 20 years old, Dylan joined her family as an incredibly energetic and lovable two and half year old. She was told he had a Global Developmental Delay, and as an afterthought, oh and FAS too (Fetal Alcohol Syndrome). She had heard of FAS, but not to the extent she was trained as a psychologist, or prepared as a parent. She shares with us:
As a parent you are always looking for that one big thing. What we discovered about FASD was lots of things will make a little bit of difference, but there is no one thing that makes a huge difference.
I think you will resonate with Vanessa and her journey. We also talk about her book “explained by brain” and why it was important for her to write it. In her forward she apologizes to Dylan for all the “dodgy things” she tried. Like many of you, her journey has been one of forgiving oneself for what one didn’t know at the time, but getting on with it to find the answers and sharing experiences to help others.