Internationally renowned TV chef Jean-Christophe Novelli has revealed that his son may never talk again after being diagnosed with autism.
Three-year-old Valentino has also battled cancer, receiving the all-clear from stage four neuroblastoma in 2017.
Jean-Christophe’s wife Michelle Kelly opened up about Valentino’s condition to Hello! magazine after her step-daughter Christina’s wedding in Santorini.
Michelle wasn’t able to attend because she had to look after her son at home.
He’s a little fighter and we are looking on the positive side.
“We’re having to accept that he may be non-verbal, which is very sad,” she said.
“He can’t even say ‘Mummy’, which is heartbreaking.”
The sad news comes two and a half years after Jean-Christophe, 59, and partner Michelle’s little boy was given the all-clear from stage four neuroblastoma.
While he was having cancer treatment, the parents found out he had the rare genetic condition Microdeletion Syndrome.
Half of children with the condition will grow up living normal lives, but some will develop learning difficulties, autism or heart conditions.
Opening up about the diagnosis, Jean-Christophe told the Sunday Mirror: “He’s been on a real long journey though and if he can beat cancer, he can handle this. He’s a little fighter and we are looking on the positive side.
“When Michelle told me he has severe autism I just thought ‘thank [bleep] at least he’s alive’. Even in this situation, we are very, very privileged, we live in a great country.”
Michelle, 44, added: “When they told me, I wasn’t surprised. I knew he had it. When I got home, it hit me and I was upset about it. The poor little mite has been through so much.”
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