Real Housewives of New Jersey star Jacqueline Laurita has been very vocal about her son Nicholas’s autism diagnosis and in a candid interview with Parenting.com, the mother discusses her breakthrough moment when she realized that she was making progress with him.
“Actually it was during the Sandy hurricane. We had a blackout and I just had a lot of time to really enforce everything the behavioural therapist was teaching me to do with him,” said the RHoNJ wife. “I couldn’t give him a bottle of water unless he said the sound of the letter."
When Nicholas was about 18 months old, Jacqueline realized that there was something different about her son. He began to regress in his speech and behavior, and she showed her husband, Chris Laurita, that something was off.
“I said ‘Nicholas, get mommy the ball,' and he couldn’t follow a simple command ... That’s when my husband was like lets go see someone about this.” After that, they went to visit a friend whose child is also autistic and after evaluations and meetings with celebrity autism activist, Jenny McCarthy, Jac learned that her son was autistic. It was a very emotional and trying time, but Jac continue to push their son to overcome it.
“It’s hard, because you’re watching your child cry,” she said, but the behavioral therapist told her that they had to break it out of him. At first, Nicholas only made the sound of the letter “w,” but eventually the RhoNJ star got him to say the word “water.”
“Once he started saying words, you got to add on to the sentence,” Jacqueline started, saying that it was an encouraging moment for her. “If he can do this, he can do anything else. I just have to keep at it.”
Check out the video for Jacqueline’s inspirational story!