Nicola Cunningham and her son Kaiden at their home in Blanchardstown.  Photograph: Alan Betson

Kaiden Cunningham (9) loves cuddles, kisses, swings and bouncing around on trampolines. “He is a kind, gentle little boy,” says his mother, Nicola. “(...)

 Nicola Cunningham and her son Kaiden at their home in Blanchardstown. ‘He effectively had post-traumatic stress, which led to this self-injurious behaviour and taking chunks out of himself.’  Photograph: Alan Betson

On weekday mornings, nine-year-old Kaiden Cunningham waits in the front room looking out for the school bus. His other three brothers and sisters hea(...)