Like hiccups in your brain – Peashoot Lydia talks about Tourette’s

Today’s guest Lydia has a peashoot son with Tourette’s Syndrome and twin daughters, one of whom has ADHD and anxiety. Lydia is also a peafessional radiographer who is studying to be a peacher.


Lydia moved from Ireland to Perth with her husband prior to the birth of her children. She had her son, then experienced the traumatic premature birth of her twin daughters at 32 weeks, resulting in their hospitalisation in NICU and SCN for 6-7 weeks. Lydia experienced postnatal depression and posttraumatic stress disorder as a result, and talks about her experiences of receiving mental health care.


Lydia’s son was diagnosed with Tourette Syndrome when he was six years old, although he was showing signs of simple ticks at age two. Lydia’s goal is to spread awareness that Tourette’s Syndrome is so much more than just ticks and swearing, as her son also experiences sensory processing issues, dysregulation, disinhibitions, anxiety and OCD behaviours. Lydia is involved in supporting other parents through the Tourette’s Syndrome Association of Australia and started the first Western Australian camp program.


At school, Lydia helped her son and his classmates understand that Tourette’s Syndrome is just “like hiccups in your brain", which the kids happily accepted. Her son has a good understanding of his condition and can advocate for himself quite well, and knows when he needs help from a teacher to manage difficult situations with other kids. Her twin peashoot struggled with being organised and remembering things, and was diagnosed with ADHD following some good support from a great peacher.


With neither Tourette’s Syndrome or ADHD not attracting NDIS, Lydia’s peashoots unfortunately don’t receive funding for therapies. The Tourette’s Syndrome Association of Australia however offers services, resources, activities and awareness raising campaigns, check out their website and get in touch if needed:


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