An Ohio barber made special accommodations so a boy with autism would feel comfortable while getting his haircut in a heartwarming moment.
Marco Conti, owner of Marky Fresh Barbershop in Mentor, Ohio, believes that owning the largest barbershop in the city requires a higher sense of responsibility to make every client feel welcome.
So when 7-year-old Brycen Juby was overstimulated by his surroundings in Marky Fresh, Conti knew exactly how to make his haircut a less stressful event.
“We try to make it an equal playing field for everybody and we try to adapt to that you know person and try to make it a personal experience for them,” Conti told WJW-TV.
“It’s really part of the experience. We want everyone that comes in here to feel good and leave even better.”
Brycen was diagnosed with autism and apraxia of speech when he was only 2 years old, according to Yahoo Lifestyle.
His mother said that as Brycen has gotten older, going to get a haircut has been nearly impossible.
The simple errand many of us take for granted ended in a “screaming meltdown every time.”
“For the last roughly four years my husband has been cutting his hair at home,” his mother, Ashley Juby, told Yahoo Lifestyle. “[Brycen] would still melt down every time.”
Recently, however, he began to tolerate his haircuts better so Ashley and her husband decided to try a barbershop — Conti’s barbershop.
They reached out to Marky Fresh and asked if they could set up an appointment for after the shop had closed to eliminate extra stimulants, a request Conti was more than willing to grant.
But when Brycen and his father arrived at Marky Fresh, the boy “became very emotional with the whole situation,” according to Conti.
Conti noticed that Brycen was more comfortable outside than he was inside so he asked the young boy if he would rather have his haircut outside.
They all went outside and Brycen’s dad cradled the young boy’s face as Conti cut his hair.
It was the first time the Ohio barbershop had accommodated a client with sensory needs, but Conti is sure it won’t be the last.
“This has opened doors for those parents that were silent and those that just didn’t know that we are more than willing to help,” he said.
“I feel that it is our duty to open our hearts and to accommodate everyone as best as we can with whatever resources we have available with action over intention,” Conti continued. “I just wanted him to feel loved and comfortable and safe and that there was nothing to fear.”
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