February 01, 2007 05:30 PM

This past Monday’s episode of The View was dedicated to discussing autism, which affects 1 in 166 children. The guest host on the show was singer Toni Braxton, who’s son Diezel, 3 1/2, was diagnosed with PDD-NOS (pervasive developmental disorder – not otherwise specified) last fall. PDD-NOS is the classification often given to children under age 5 who are displaying signs of a pervasive developmental disorder, of which autism is the most severe. Diezel’s case is on the milder side.

Last October, Toni was angry at his doctors, saying,"They dismissed me. I don’t know if it would have made a difference or not for him to be diagnosed earlier, but they had a ‘wait and see’ attitude. It makes me so angry because a mother knows when something is wrong with her child."

However, Toni showed a much softer side on The View on Monday, when she broke down crying while discussing Diezel’s symptons. She said,

No eye contact, he didn’t play along with his brother [Denim, 5], he played to the side. All the kids would be in the house – he would be away from them. He had to have an order. Always an order. Had to eat on the red plate, with the Mickey Mouse fork. Everything had to be in order. He had to sit on the left side, always.  I get all emotional. I just found out…so, when you’re just finding out something it takes a second to get used to it…everyone has been so helpful to me.

For more on the episode, visit Watching The View.

You can watch the video by clicking below (start at 3:50 for Toni’s piece) but please be aware that it is upsetting, as Toni is crying throughout.

Please share your experiences with your children along the autism spectrum in the comments, if you feel so inclined.

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