One of the most well-known rituals of Christmas is putting up a Christmas tree.
But Paddy and Christine McGuinness will be vetoing the tradition this year for the sake of their children.
The couple, who are parents to twins Leo and Penelope, as well as baby Felicity, said that they will not be partaking in the tradition due to their twin’s autism.
Posting a picture of five stockings on Instagram, Christine said that they would be the only decorations the McGuinness household would have up.
‘I think this is enough for our Christmas decorations, I’m nervous about putting a tree up, I don’t think I’m going to,’ wrote Christine.
‘Last year was the most upsetting Christmas we’ve had, we had just been told our twins had autism and we felt very out of our depth. Christmas massively affects the twins behaviour,’ she continued.
‘They were extremely anxious and unsettled. The Christmas lights, trees, decorations and music… it was all too much. It was very over stimulating and with so much change everywhere it was quite frightening for our children who were pretty much non verbal, they had no understanding of what was going on.’
Opening up about her twin’s diagnosis, Christine said that their Christmas is ‘something we have to accept.’
‘Now Christmas has to be really quiet with no decorations or bright lights,’ she said to The Mirror.
‘It is something we have to accept. And as time goes by all their mini achievements mean the world to you.’
However, Christine thinks that there will be real positive found in dialling down the celebrations, which will allow the twins to enjoy Christmas with the rest of the family.
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‘I’m feeling confident we will have a happy Christmas this year… with a lot less decorations,’ said Christine on her Instagram post.
‘Less is more for our children, they wouldn’t care if they got 1 present or 10 and that is a quality you can’t buy.’
Autism affects 1.1% of the UK’s population, with roughly 695,000 people estimated to have the condition.