Yooku My Brother

The Enigma: Autism

by Mansah Gaisie Barnes


Book Details

When a family is ravaged by the destructive and enigmatic nature of autism, the individual family members must learn to deal with this mysterious condition in their own ways. Yooku, My Brother examines the effects of autism, and answers some of the baffling questions surrounding this increasingly common affliction. The protagonist’s brother Yooku has autism, and she describes her family’s struggles with his condition eloquently and in a way that is accessible to all readers. She shares how the stress of having a loved one with autism leads to social and emotional complications, not only for the person with autism, but for their families and caregivers as well. The author: Mansah Gaisie Barnes also provides helpful facts, resources, and insights to help cope with the challenge—and through her book, we come to know the joy that results from learning to understand those with autism. This is a no-holds-barred look at autism, presented with love and compassion. A must-have for anyone adjusting to life with a family member who has autism.


Book Excerpt

I wish I could tell them how I feel. I wish I could describe what I hear, smell, see and fear. I wish I know how to show what is going on in my mind. I wish.. I just wish my world is not so different from theirs. Each day, as I try to understand the world around me: a sound, sight, activity or feeling another comes tumbling down at me, until I cannot take it any more: sounds, lights, voices and smells are all over the place. I mostly feel like I am drowning in all the chaos. I get confused, agitated and anxious as things whirl around me. I scream and cover my ears to drown out the deafening, scary and uncomfortable sounds. I rock back and forth to calm my anxious and over stimulated mind and body when the whole world seems to be crushing down on me. I flap my hands to block the sights I cannot seem to block out. Sometimes I even try to pluck my eyes out of their sockets to stop the glaring lights from hurting me. I spin my toys to help me gain some control in this unpredictable world because the spinning of these wheels are unbelievably more reliable and predictable. They do not understand that all I need is a world that is predictable. They do not understand that their world turns me into what they think I am....


About the Author

Mansah Gaisie Barnes

About the Author: Mansah Gaisie Barnes was born in Ghana (West Africa). She graduated from the University of Cape Coast with a degree in liberal arts and an associate degree in education. After working for a while in Ghana, she left for England and lived in Glasgow, Manchester, and London, where she married her husband, Gordon. She later joined him in the U.S., and they now live in Lawrenceville, New Jersey, with their three boys: Declan, Dewayne, and Deshawn. Mansah recently graduated from Drexel University with a Master of Science degree in special education and a concentration in autism.