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TikTok star Glen Cooney on life with TS

Posted Tue 3rd Nov 2020 at 11:27
by Glen Cooney

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Hi, my name is Glen, I’m 42 and I have Tourette Syndrome and ADHD.

My tics started at age 10 after a traumatic event. My cousin, who was 11, was killed on the way to school and soon after, I developed facial tics like eye rolling and nose twitching.

Unfortunately, my Dad was abusive towards me and would force me to ‘shut up’ or stop rolling my eyes etc. Eventually I became good at hiding it and holding it in. I did see a psychiatrist but my mum was told I was just disruptive.

When I left school and started working I was always seen as being a bit mad or eccentric because I’d say random things or throw stuff around. Some people found me to be rude and obnoxious. I would lose friends and get in trouble at work because of my behaviour but I just thought it was how I was! I didn’t ever think I could have any control over it.

So that’s how things continued until 7 years ago when my day died, aged 60. My TS started to get much worse - motor tics got to the point I could no longer hide them at home. I’d be making the kids dinner and throw food around. One time I threw cooked chips over my head and shouted ‘Fries to go!’ We decided it was time to get some help and I was referred and quickly diagnosed with Tourette Syndrome and ADHD.

And although it was a bit emotional at first, at least I now had an answer and could explain my behaviour to anyone I offended. I now no longer feel I have to hide it or be embarrassed anymore and feel much better and happier.

My son suggested I join TikTok to post some videos of my kitchen fails and things soon went viral! 3 months in and I now have 370k followers!

My ongoing goal now is to raise awareness and show people how it affects my day to day life while trying to have some light hearted fun along the way. I want to help others embrace their TS so they no longer feel the need to hide it as I did for so long, and also to highlight some of the mental health issues that can accompany these conditions.

We are all in this together and I will fight to raise awareness and show the world we are normal people who can have a normal life.

You can follow Glen on his TikTok page here https://vm.tiktok.com/ZSXUT5De/


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