Home > alternative medicine, anxiety, Elective Mutism, family, health, Mute, Selective Mutism, self healing, Shy, shyness > The early signs of Selective Mutism we missed.

The early signs of Selective Mutism we missed.

Just as the woman who I worked with missed the signs with her daughter, so did we.  Even as an infant, my son would not make the same kind of eye contact that his older brother was doing at the same age.  We talked about it and decided he just did not like to look or focus on our face, like his older brother did.  He would look focus at us and then divert his eyes or turn away. When he a little older, he had a thrusting motion with his tongue, that became a clue to us when he was in preschool that he was anxious.

Thinking back, I should not have written off that simple turn of the head.  It made us think he was shy. So for the first two years, we had already made assumptions about him, we should not of.  We thought about perhaps he had sight or hearing issues and had those checked out. 

He had the loudest cry and piercing scream as a baby.  We use to say it made us sweat when he cried.  Again reassured that it was just a different child than our first and not out of the norm.

I talked and compared with other mothers. It lead me down a path to accept as normal things that should of been the first signs of anxiety or selective mutism, when you look at them in total.

When the preschool teacher came to ask  us how long he was developmentally delayed, it was a shock.  We were clueless, we had missed the cues we saw to give us a hint of the things to come that he did not speak in school came as a total surprise.  How did we miss it?  He was not delayed at all,  but when he was in school without speaking he was to them.

I write this blog as a way of helping other families that may starting on the same roads that we traveled.  If it helps one other family, my time writing this will have been worth it.

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  1. Veronica Lopez-Parker
    March 26, 2014 at 5:46 pm

    I know this was written a long time ago and I don’t know if you’ll read this but I feel compelled to reply because you mentioned something that I noticed also with my child who has SM. I noticed even as a very small infant that my daughter showed signs of autism. As she grew closer to a year old, these signs diminished at home but were still present when we were out in the community. I wonder how many other parents miss the signs of anxiety because we are not taught to look for them. It never occurred to me that an infant could experience such severe anxiety, but now that I look back it seems so obvious. I feel bad that I could have done more for her but didn’t even realize there was a problem. I just accepted that she was probably going to be on the spectrum and I would love her no matter what. Now I wonder if we could have done something to prevent the SM if we would have just been more aware of the anxiety.

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