Paddy McGuinness forced to 'bite his lip' after stranger's comments about his autistic kids

PADDY McGuinness has admitted that he was forced to "bite his lip" after a stranger's ignorant comments about his autistic kids.

The 48-year-old star shares eight-year-old twins Penelope and Leo, and five-year-old Felicity with wife Christine, 33.

All three children have been diagnosed with autism; an incurable, lifelong developmental condition that affects how people perceive the world and interact with others.

And Paddy has now spoken out on the ignorance surrounding their "invisible disability", revealing he was forced to stop himself from hitting back after a stranger made rude comments about them.

Despite the family having a blue disabled parking badge on display in their car, the fellow shopper questioned its legitimacy – as they "don't look disabled".

Paddy reflected on the awkward encounter, which happened as they exited the car park, in a new interview with Sky.

He explained: "I’ve had to educate a bloke there that has clearly been judgmental at why we were parking there even though we had a blue badge.

"He said: 'They don’t look disabled', you know, you’ve got to bite your lip in those circumstances."

The Take Me Out host later added to the BBC: "I think things like that are important to sort of educate people and let them know exactly why you’re in that disabled spot, but that’s only a little tiny thing."

Paddy and Christine regularly use their platform to speak out on their children's disorder, educating followers on their day-to-day lives.

Christine previously opened up about their "very difficult" lockdown, which caused youngest Felicity to "regress".

Earlier this year she also shared her heartbreak as she revealed her autistic children had become "physical" with her while struggling with the UK's third lockdown.

The devoted mum admitted that the situation was "awful" as she shared a private WhatsApp message she'd sent a friend with followers.

And back in January, the star revealed that her children had enjoyed fishfingers and chips for dinner on Christmas Day due to their "food aversion" and fear of trying new textures.

Christine has spoken in the past about how difficult it is for the family to celebrate Christmas, and put up her first Christmas tree in six years last year.

What is autism?

Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is an incurable, lifelong developmental condition that affects how people perceive the world and interact with others.

It affects around one in 100 people in the UK and is three to four times more common in boys than in girls.

Many people with ASD find it hard to understand other people's feelings and emotions, and they may have difficulty holding conversations.

When they are young, their language development may take longer and they can struggle to use facial expressions, using gestures to communicate instead.

They may also find it hard to connect with other people and to hold eye contact with unfamiliar individuals.

Many children with ASD like to follow a routine, and changes to this can cause distress.

High functioning autism is an informal term some people use to describe those on the autism spectrum disorder.

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