After Thomas 
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True story of a severely autistic child and his parents' struggles to cope with his affliction. Kyle (Andrew Byrne) was born with severe autism and, as his mother Nicola (Keely Hawes) determinedly throws her life into caring for his needs, a rift appears between her and Rob, (Ben Miles) her husband. Nicola only has her parents, Pat and Jim to rely on in her efforts to reach through the thick fog of autism into Kyle's heart, as they are also absolutely doted on Kyle and his wellbeing. When the family gets a Labrador pup, Thomas, there are signs that his innocent, pure canine heart might be reaching out to Kyle in ways that even the greatest human love cannot achieve. When Grandma Pat passes away, the family must solidify to overcome their grief but when Thomas becomes ill and looks like following Pat, Kyle's progress is threatened.
The true story of Kyle Graham: a six-year-old boy suffering from severe autism; a condition that has put a huge strain on the marriage of his parents, Rob and Nicola. Nicola has refused to be beaten by her sons affliction, devoting the majority of her time to coming to terms with it, thus creating a rift with her husband. Out of the darkness comes a shimmering chance of hope in the shape of Thomas, a golden retriever puppy. Can Kyles new-found friendship break into a world where all else has failed? After Thomas is by turns gritty, warm and funny, but above all else is a realistic insight into every parents worst nightmare.
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i am now 33,and used to be severely autistic and was believed to have severe learning disability as well as i only spoke in sounds/noise and echolalia,i didnt use communication for interactions sake.
i was and still am very distant from people and i related so much to the boy,kyle all the way through this film and it made me feel very good to know there is a boy out there like me [its a true story],even now,if i saw a person fall off a bike like kyle saw i would [like him] have sympathy for the bike;not the person.
i also had massive meltdowns like kyle whenever it came to getting new shoes or new clothes or anything else new,and i had a obsession with thomas the tank engine [i still do now].
my mum developed depression when i was 5 years old as she couldnt cope-i had severe ADHD as well and life threatening epilepsy.
my dad was very distant from me-like kyles dad,and my mum became an alcoholic to self medicate-she had no support from outside sources as there were not any and she was told by our family doctor that i was autistic because she was a cold mother [which is a very ancient theory of autism created by sigmund freud] and was made to feel ashamed of herself,so i was the family secret.
i was resented by my sister,and the more distant family for being such a burden on them.
however, i had a natural affinity with animals,i didnt process and acknowledge humans but i instantly interacted with animals and they calmed me-like kyle with thomas.
i saw the world through my cats eyes,i related to them.
i went on to have many beloved pets including chickens that i bred in my bedroom and i also had disabled riding therapy every week which calmed my behaviors down for at least a day afterwards,horse riding made me very happy,i was one with the horse,i related to them.
unfortunately the amount of medications i was on,put on lots of weight so i became obese and couldnt ride anymore, i am still trying to lose weight.
animals are amazing for autistic people,and i am so glad kyle got the chance to experience life with thomas.
so,the film-i loved it but i didnt like it when the dad said kyle wasnt autistic he was a child with autism [or something like that] -ask anyone on the spectrum if they agree with person first language and they will more than likely tell you no,because for us;autism is part of us and our identity, it is what drives us,it is our brain.
i loved the mum in the film as she was so understanding and caring [mostly] which was quite rare from back in the day when kyle was young as classic autism let alone other forms like aspergers wasnt understood back then.
she saw a positive side to him that the dad didnt, i am glad of this,because i am fed up of being seen as a tragedy because i was severely autistic,it isnt a tragedy to be like this,my life was very beautiful through my eyes,yes i had many,many challenges and behaviors that were difficult for my family but for me it was never a bad thing and i enjoy having my brain being autistic, it makes me feel happy to have my own world as its a safety net from the outside.
what made me unhappy was mental illness,i was severely depressed since 10 years old due to bullying and my mums violent behavior and the way i was abused by my dad for the way i think and act,and no one recognised it till i was 25 in spite of trying to kill myself multiple times, i was institutionalized at 18 because of my behaviors and my mums violent behavior towards me.
i think its very important for parents of severely/moderately classic autistic children to teach them to type or use AAC so they can learn to express themselves this way,never assume your child cant do it,i have personally seen profoundly autistic people learn to communicate through typing as well as AAC apps,ive also seen a profoundly autistic lad write on paper 'chips' using the hand over hand method.
please remember severely autistic people can be mentally ill as well,when i lived in a specialist residential home for severely and profoundly autistic adults and children,i was left suffering with such severe depression i developed severe psychosis,the home believed people with severe autism cannot have mental illness and that i was just repeating things id seen on tv or worse;making it up.
like kyle,i have developed dramatically since childhood,he went onto get many GCSEs,for me i went onto compete in the special olympics and i now have my own apartment in a care facility,plus i dont require 2 staff to myself anymore i only need one.
i am now diagnosed with moderate classic autism with mild learning disability,and i have many beloved pets including a support cat-yes a support cat.
so i honestly recommend this film to all parents of autistic children, especially severely or profoundly autistic children, and i recommend it to aspies to,so they can see what the rest of the spectrum can be like,but as we all know you seen one person with autism=youve seen one person with autism,so kyle is just one person,it just so happens i related to him very much.
I found myself laughing and crying along with this film and enjoying the connection the boy builds with the dog which in turn triggers other changes. It also shows the power of having supportive and understanding people around to help and advise. If you're interested in Autism or human-dog companionship then this is a must see. If you aren't then its still worth watching!
Well, it was funny, sad, heartbreaking, comical and many othe things. Such a lovely film about a boy who as severe autsim and along comes mans best friend.
I wont go into describing what the film is about as many other revewers already have, but what i will say is, if you like real life films, if you know someone who is autistic, or you love dogs, then this is well worth watching.
I cannt stress how good ths film is.
I recognised 4 of the actors, and their parts and portrayals were excellent. I would recommend this film to anyone with a link to autism/autism spectrum as it shows how a real family live and cope with everyday.
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