Department of Education

I get embarrassed about my sibling on the spectrum. Help!

I get embarrassed about my sibling on the spectrum. Help!


Having someone with autism in the family impacts on everyone in the family. You might be teased about your sibling or worry about who will look after them in the future.

When you go out in public together, it helps if your sibling is prepared.

  • Knowing where you are going, why and how, will help reduce their anxiety.
  • Before you go out, talk through what you are going to do with your sibling and parent.
  • Work out ways to avoid situations that are particularly stressful for your sibling.

If your sibling starts acting in a way you find embarrassing, do not get angry – this behaviour is not their fault.

  • Talk to them gently and be supportive.
  • Your sibling might want to carry an Autism Alert Card to help explain to other people about their autism.

Having someone with autism in your family can be a really positive experience too and it has probably made you much more tolerant and accepting of people’s differences.

You could speak to your school about running autism awareness sessions perhaps during PHSE lessons, so that other people in your school can learn more about autism too.


If you have any questions or would like to talk to someone, you can call the NAS Autism Helpine on 0845 070 4004

For details of the NAS Autism Alert Card.

There is also lots of information for siblings on the NAS website.


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