To read on the site of The Mirror (UK):
I tought I was a bad mum for 11 years.. then my daughter was diagnosed with Down’s syndrome
By Jane Gregory
Beverley Minett blamed herself for her daughter Claire’s bad behaviour and slow development, until she got the answers she needed.
Looking down at her baby daughter, Beverley Minett noticed her eyes had an unusual slant. But she dismissed it as a quirk as, in all other respects, her baby looked no different to anyone else’s.
It took a further 11 years before Beverley discovered her beloved daughter Claire suffered from Mosaic Down’s syndrome, a rare form of Down’s that few people have heard of.
While the diagnosis certainly explained her disruptive behaviour and learning problems, it hasn’t held Claire back from living life to the full. Now 34, Claire lives independently and graduated with a 2:1 degree in media in July. She is a wonder to her mum Beverley, 60, a print finisher, and her partner of 22 years Paul, 54, a printer.
« Most mums are devastated to discover their babies have Down’s syndrome, » says Beverley, from Rochdale, Greater Manchester. « But I was relieved because it meant that Claire wasn’t a naughty child and I wasn’t a bad mum.
« Claire is so unusual. She can go halfway across the world to a medical conference all on her own, but a fly trapped in her flat can cause her to phone me in hysterics. In some ways she’s like a teenager. »
After giving birth to Claire, her first child, in August 1978, Beverley soon noticed she was slower than friends’ babies when sitting up and reaching for objects,and her constant whingeing drove Beverley to distraction. Claire’s slow development became more obvious when Beverley’s second child, Andrew, now 33, came along 14 months later.
Inspiration: Beverley is extremely proud of her daughter Photo Tony Spencer
« I once left Andrew on the toilet while I answered the door, » says Beverley, who has been divorced from her children’s dad for over 20 years. « When I came back Claire decorated the carpet with his waste. She regularly drank all the kids’ milk at playgroup and urinated down the slide. When I told her it was wrong she just looked confused. »
Convinced there was more to Claire’s naughtiness, Beverley badgered her GP for help. But brain scans, and vision and hearing checks all drew a blank. « One psychologist advised: ‘Don’t worry – Claire’s so outgoing. She’ll get a job on the stage!’ But I knew there was more to it , » says Beverley.
Claire’s disruptive behaviour continued through primary school and she found learning difficult. Finally, aged 11, and about to start secondary school, Beverley took Claire to a geneticist who tested her chromosomes and gave her a diagnosis of Mosaic Down’s syndrome. Read all.