12 year old twins Yuval and Omri Abromovitch are used to doing everything together. At age 5, Omri was diagnosed with Tourette’s Syndrome. Three years later, Yuval was also diagnosed with Tourette’s. Even in this disorder, they are together. Omri explains, “With me, there are certain movements of the hands, legs, neck, and head.” Yuval makes different noises.
Although many children with Tourette’s are ashamed to talk about their condition, Yuval and Omri decided they have something to say about it. “The most painful thing is when people laugh at you,” says Omri in an interview with a local Israeli news channel. “A lot of kids don’t know how to deal with it,” he adds. “Children laugh and adults stare,” says Yuval.
They also said during the interview, that in addition to dealing with the disorder, they also have to deal with their surroundings which are not always supportive. One classmate admits, “At first I laughed because I didn’t know what it was.” Omri explains, “You want to know how it feels? It’s like when you have to sneeze and you can’t stop it.” Tourette’s causes repetitive vocal sounds or body movements.
Although many people know Tourette’s from TV as the disorder that causes people to curse, that is not really that common. Yuval Tsur, 9, also has Tourette’s. “I had this tic where I would hit my head against the wall,” he says. “Then, Grandma put a pillow inside this hat.” He’s fine with who he is. “I was a goalie and would bounce the ball between goals. Just because I have tics, doesn’t mean I can’t do things like everyone else.”