Christmas Day with my autistic brother isn't perfect, but it's ours

If there’s ever a time of year that throws the unconventional family into sharp relief, it’s Christmas. From sumptuous cookery programmes to wholesome films and pushy advertising, we’re surrounded by portrayals of what it means to have the perfect celebration. I often spend December feeling like Kevin McCallister in Home Alone, as he gazes through the windows of brightly lit houses at happy families celebrating within. While I wouldn’t trade my family for another, there remains a tendency to compare. And as others crowd round their mantelpieces and their dining room tables exchanging gifts and snaffling Quality Street, I’ll be at my brother’s care home, as I am every year.

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23rd December 2015