Author Topic: Should I say something?  (Read 12007 times)

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Miss Bee

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Re: Should I say something?
« Reply #15 on: February 19, 2013, 04:38:42 PM »
My own DD was like this, and she ended up going into speech therapy at school , kindergarten through 3rd grade.  It helped and her speech is perfectly normal now.  She's 14 now. 

Go ahead and say something especially if you have resources to share. 
Fwiw, my DD was in pre-school and her teachers mentioned it to us at her reviews - of course we already knew she couldn't speak well - and gave us resources but we chose to wait until she was in kindergarten the next year.  We did and she was fine.  We thought about taking DD earlier to see someone but when we discussed it with her pediatrician he always said she'd outgrow it, and that speech therapy in school would help.  That ended up being the case. 

We were never offended when someone brought it up, except - when my MIL did, because she always insinuated that DD was also intellectually or mentally impaired, which was far from the truth.  She could read by 4, and knew her alphabet, numbers, etc. She was also aware of her own speech impediment.  But otherwise, we all understood, of course, that others would notice it. 

If you bring it up politely and gently, chances are your friend will not be offended by it, especially if you have resources to share. 



*inviteseller

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Re: Should I say something?
« Reply #16 on: February 19, 2013, 04:53:37 PM »
Miss Bee, I think what worries me, and what worried me with my daughter is this little girl is very smart, but I am afraid with her speech people will assume like your MIL did.  As far as when she starts kindergarten, she cannot start next year because she doesn't turn 5 until right after the cutoff date so she has another year, and also our school speech therapist deals with basic speech issues, so I would hope if she could start now through the county early intervention program she would have a head start so she may not need the school services.  Because the girl is not involved in any kind of structured day care setting, she can't get a referral through them so I just wanted to mention it.  I am gonna work on wording and talk with her over the weekend.

Miss Bee

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Re: Should I say something?
« Reply #17 on: February 19, 2013, 05:01:19 PM »
In the case of her not going to school in the near future, then my vote is to definitely to bring this up and share what information you have with them. 
Do keep in mind that her parents, as well as the girl herself, is aware that others cannot understand her.  Understand too, that they've probably already had others, including random strangers in the store, etc. making sometimes not-so-smart or polite comments to them about it, so the parents may be sensitive about it. 
But if you come across as wanting to be helpful and emphasizing that you know the girl is otherwise intelligent and well-behaved, etc. but just that you'd like her to get the help you're sure she can get - sooner rather than later - her parents may be more receptive to your advice. 

MommyPenguin

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Re: Should I say something?
« Reply #18 on: February 19, 2013, 09:33:47 PM »
I was thinking about this today while listening to my 4-year-old speak, and it really made me realize that if you were having trouble understanding *my* 4-year-old (who is probably really close in age to this little girl, as she won't be 5 until the end of October), I would really appreciate knowing it.  My daughter's speech isn't as good as her older sister's, at 6, but I do understand pretty much every word she says, so I'm not sure I'd notice if other people could or couldn't, you know?  I like to think that one of her teachers at church or AWANA or Mother's Day Out would mention it, but who knows?  So I'd definitely appreciate knowing so that I could get it out.

I do think that it's something that takes a person spending some real time with the kid to realize, though.  I was listening to my daughter today when she was on the phone with my mom.  My mom has mentioned having some trouble understanding her on the phone, and I figured out why today.  When she's on the phone, she gets really excited, moves around constantly, turns away from the phone or sometimes forgets to hold it to her face, refers to things that are in front of her as if my mom can see them (like picking up a toy cell phone and saying, "This is Charlotte's.  Sometimes she talks into it," when my mom has no idea what she's talking about).  I could definitely see a kid that somebody only sees, say, at crowded noisy family gatherings, or at school dropoff when the kid is really excited, or at Zumba when the kid is practically a zombie and overdue for a nap, having trouble understanding an otherwise understandable kid.  But in your case, it sounds like you see plenty of the girl and have the time (and a bit of experience) that makes you somebody who can truly notice something that might be a real problem in time to help the kid.  And nowadays, needing some speech therapy isn't shameful like it was when I was a kid.

ladyknight1

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Re: Should I say something?
« Reply #19 on: February 19, 2013, 09:40:29 PM »
OP, I encourage you to gently bring the issue up in conversation with the mother. I know someone who has refused to get therapy for her child (a different issue), and he is now a teenager and the issue out of control completely.

*inviteseller

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Re: Should I say something?
« Reply #20 on: February 19, 2013, 10:19:31 PM »
I have known this child her whole life and because my DD and neighbors DS play together alot, we spend alot of time together besides babysitting.  I didn't really put too much thought into it over the summer but since she turned 4, things she should be able to say she just can't and that she mumbles doesn't help.  I tell her I need her to speak up and hope I can catch something, anything but when she is telling me a story about what she is playing with, I can rarely understand more than 1 or 2 words.  I have been watching to see if she was having trouble with her hearing (a problem my DD had until ear tubes) but she responds appropriately.  I am by no means an expert, but with my DD's issues, I do tend to notice it more.  I am going to bring it up this weekend just casually when the kids play together.

Drunken Housewife

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Re: Should I say something?
« Reply #21 on: February 19, 2013, 10:51:18 PM »
Speech therapy changed my daughter's life.  I think it could make such a difference for this girl if her parents were to realize that she has an issue which needs attention.  I think you should say something.

I did just this once, and I said something like, "I feel I need to say something, and I want to say first it's not in any way a criticism of your parenting.  It's not at all.  I just want to say that I think you might want to take your child for a speech therapy evaluation."  I pointed out that my own child did speech therapy and how wonderful it was for her and that it can often be obtained for free through the local school district (in the U.S.). 

The social repercussions from having unintelligible speech are huge.  The little girl's life could be so vastly improved if her parents get this message.  It isn't their fault that their child has a speech impediment, and they may be in denial.
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*inviteseller

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Re: Should I say something?
« Reply #22 on: March 01, 2013, 04:36:39 PM »
********UPDATE*********

So, I finally got up the nerve to speak to the mom.  I told her that maybe it was me, but I had a hard time understanding her.  I told her she was so smart and loved to create stories, but I had trouble understanding what she was saying.  She just laughed and said "yeah, I know, I can usually figure it out, but if not I tell her to draw me a picture"  :o  I just dropped it after that because they seem to have found a way around it (no I am not going to play pictionary with her when I watch her!).  I will just continue to say 'uh huh' to her and hope if she has to say something important, I will understand her.

Cami

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Re: Should I say something?
« Reply #23 on: March 01, 2013, 05:08:10 PM »
I'm sorry to hear that the mom was so disinterested in the issue of her dd's speech.

Sadly, this woman sounds like a relative of mine whose daughter did not get surgery and speech therapy until she was 10 because the mother shrugged off every attempt to discuss it with her.  When the school finally forced her to look into it, she then had to save up the money for the surgery, so it didn't happen until she was 10 (of course, there were always more important things to spend the money on, like mani-pedis.) Her speech is much better, but no one would ever say it's good. The doctors told her that she had done a huge disservice to her daughter. She shrugged it off and now says her dd's speech impediment is "cute". Ugh.

m2kbug

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Re: Should I say something?
« Reply #24 on: March 02, 2013, 12:14:16 PM »
I suppose at this point, if the subject comes up, you can share your resources.  Both my children had to have speech therapy.  The thing is, I had NO IDEA about speech therapy at all at first.  I had a very difficult time understanding my daughter and she didn't speak as well as other children her age, but sort of expected she would outgrow it.  I don't recall even bringing this up to her pediatrician.  It was a concern, I really just had no idea there was something I could do like speech therapy, or if she would just grow out of it.  It wasn't until I found out my my neighbor's children were getting speech therapy through the school district I had a clue there was something I could try to do.  I was a stay-at-home mom.  I wonder if DD was in daycare someone would have said something and told me what to do.  So this other mom told me what to do and I called the local elementary school and started the process.   The next thing I know, she was in preschool getting speech therapy and occupational therapy.  The school bus would pick up and drop off at the house.  Both my children continued speech therapy into the grade school years. 

I think you've done about all you can do, but did you even mention what you did or resources?  Just KNOWING about speech therapy gave me an idea about pursuing this, maybe I would ask the pediatrician, but the information my neighbor gave me that the school district will care of this and to call our elementary school was wonderful and made the process so much easier.  I really had no clue this resource was available to me.  It might be worth it, should the topic present itself again, to mention all she needs to do is call the school.  It would be too bad if the child had to wait until kindergarten, but hopefully they would be able to set up an IEP easier. 

*inviteseller

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Re: Should I say something?
« Reply #25 on: March 02, 2013, 07:37:55 PM »
When she started laughing and saying she tells her to draw a picture of what she wants and that is what works, I was kind of dumbfounded as to what to say next.  She knows my DD goes to speech because I can't watch her DD on Mondays mornings, and the place is right next to where mom works.  Mom has asked me numerous times about the feeding issues my DD has and what I have done for that (therapy) and I talked to her about speech therapy so she knows I have the resources.  I said my piece, so she knows I know.  Hopefully she will think about it and ask me for the resources.

Pen^2

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Re: Should I say something?
« Reply #26 on: March 07, 2013, 11:14:08 PM »
This reminds me of my young cousin, who was born almost completely deaf.

His parents were in absolute denial, and would talk to him as though he could hear them, and respond to his silence and occasional garbles with "oh, he must be feeling shy right now." They never tried any work-arounds like drawing pictures. Any suggestions that maybe he could be helped were seen as the most insulting things ever said.

In high school his teachers finally managed to get him tested, and medicare provided the money for the cochlear implants it turned out he needed. Of course, his idiot parents still put off actually getting the implants for two more years...

The result? He can hear, but the lack of stimulation in his early years means he will always be of subnormal intelligence (functional, but he isn't going to finish year 12 or anything), and will always have trouble with language and communication. Like others have already said: the importance of early intervention cannot be understated.

With the 4 year old, her mother knows she has a problem, and knows you have the means to address it. But she's so laid back that it sounds like she might not put two and two together on her own at all. I would hesitantly suggest a little tentative prodding on your part, although certainly not aggressive or anything that might turn her off. If she had really thought about it at all, she'd realise that her daughter can't draw pictures for people throughout her life instead of speaking clearly.

Gyburc

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Re: Should I say something?
« Reply #27 on: March 08, 2013, 06:19:56 AM »
I have to say, I think the situation the OP is describing is just awful. A child who isn't able to communicate properly is at such a terrible, terrible disadvantage, both socially and educationally, and the results are going to stay with her for the rest of her life.

I don't mean to put pressure on you, *inviteseller, you're not the parent and you can't make the parent take notice. But please do keep prodding. And of course, when you are looking after the little girl, keep doing what you have been (repeating words, getting her to do the same, etc.).

It's not anywhere near the same league, but my DH's oldest nephew (14) has atrocious handwriting, significantly worse than his 8-year old sister's. DH was chatting to him at a family gathering, and was suggesting ways he might improve, when MIL intervened: 'Don't tell him that! You'll get his assistant taken away!'

Yes, this 14-year old boy has an assistant accompany him to every class at school to write down his answers for him. And somehow MIL thinks this is preferable to teaching him how to write on his own.

DH and I were  :o and then  >:(.
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bonyk

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Re: Should I say something?
« Reply #28 on: March 08, 2013, 06:50:27 AM »
I'm a Special Ed teacher, and these situations are all too common.  It's really very sad, but there's really not much that can be done.  I've encountered families with multiple kids who refuse to get the services.

OP, I would give to one more shot.  Maybe something like, "Hey, neighbor, Speech has been so great for DD.  It just occurred to me, maybe it would help your daughter, too.  It would only cost X.  Want the contact information?"  And if she still blows you off, let it go.   :-\

Daquiri40

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Re: Should I say something?
« Reply #29 on: March 08, 2013, 09:03:13 AM »
I had a neighbor who babied her son like nothing I have ever seen.  At 4, I could not understand most of what he said either.  She would interpret for him.  Finally, finally her husband convinced her to ask their doctor and it turns out the little boy could not hear clearly because of multiple ear infections. 

He is now 15 and hears fine and speaks clearly.

The mother would not listen to anyone that her son could not speak so anyone could understand him.  I felt sorry for him.  The mother passed away and his new stepmother treats him age appropriate.  His mother loved him but smothered him.