Teen Autistic Son Snuggling to Dad as He Did as Baby Melts Hearts Online

A heart-warming picture of a father and son who have been snuggling up the same way for 19 years has gone viral online.

Shared on Reddit on Wednesday, the post has now received over 74,000 upvotes and thousands of comments.

Odin Frost, 19, lives in Texas with his mother DeAnda Frost and father Tim. Diagnosed with autism at three years old, the viral picture of Odin and his dad Tim has delighted the internet.

"He didn't meet the mile markers in life on the same time frame as most kids and had a pretty rough start to life," Tim told Newsweek: "The professionals said he may never walk, but at age 3 Odin's determination proved them wrong."

In the viral post, Tim shared that Odin likes repetition and so has snuggled up with him in the same way since he was very young.

Tim said: "Odin loves a structured routine. In our daily life, there are things that we just do – like driving a few times a day to listen to music or watching the same movies on repeat. The picture shows us snuggling.

"Every night since I can remember, Odin, my wife, and I snuggle in bed, read a story, sing songs, talk about the day we had and pray to have an even better tomorrow. It is our absolute favorite routine."

​According to estimates from the CDC's Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring (ADDM) Network, around 1 in 44 children in the U.S. are identified as having autism spectrum disorder (ASD).

Autism spectrum disorder refers to a broad range of conditions characterized by challenges with social skills, repetitive behaviors, speech and nonverbal communication.

Gaining attention online, the Reddit post has prompted users around the world to comment and share. One Redditor wrote: "This warms my heart," while another said: "Poster of a great dad. Hats off to you good sir."

Many users also shared their personal experiences with autistic loved ones and experiences with acceptance. One user wrote: "I have an autistic son. And although the world is becoming more aware and accepting, you can't account for the bullies."

Earlier this year, new studies found that autism symptoms in children can now be detected and treated much sooner.

Tim told Newsweek: "Autism is such a wide spectrum. If you know one person with autism You know that person. It affects everyone differently so don't be quick to judge from past experiences.

"Odin can understand the world around him and is extremely empathetic – he just has a harder time in communication."

Tim says that his son inspires him: "He is authentically himself at all times. I think the world needs more people like Odin."

In January, a barber who made a haircut a game for an autistic client was praised online.

Tim and Odin Reddit
Side by side pictures of Tim and his son Odin, around 19 years apart. This heartwarming picture has gone viral on Reddit after a father shared his autistic son's routine. Tim Frost/www.allthingsfrost.com