Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Such a slow and length process

Thinking about the last few months and the year I can see Josiah has made progress. At the beginning of the year he was so gripped by fear he couldn't carry out activities at school. Now with the help of the teachers, he is able to do most activities. But still is not able to speak at school. It is now October.

To be fair there is progress when before he couldn't speak at all in front of the teachers, he now can. Now he can speak in front of them, not totally comfortably but pretty well. He can answer questions by pointing so he is definitely progressing in the non verbal communication department. This I think helps when the school needs to find out if he understands something. If the teacher asks him a question he can sometimes answer the question to me. Which seems to work most of the time. And he is able to talk to other students when I am around as well. I have yet to find out if he talks to them on his own outside of the classroom.

Speech therapy now that is a different issue completely. His last appointment was months ago, and we haven't had any contact since. From my reading the speech therapist's have a lot to do with the progress of the children and are able to have a important role in their recovery. But up until now it has been quite pressure filled and I even feel the pressure for him to speak from the speech therapist. Which is difficult as we are trying to eliminate that pressure. Without the pressure it is different. For example in front of the occupational therapist, he has been able to talk quite quickly in front of her and not feel too pressured, it makes a huge difference. So we face the dilemma we can not get private speech therapy on our medical insurance but I think we are hitting a brick wall with the current therapist.

On the other hand the psychologist has been fantastic we are due to have another meeting with her this week. Which is the next step, next term it is really important we help Josiah prepare for the changes in next year for him. A larger class and different teachers. So the plan is to transition him in. First of all I need to work out what we want Josiah to be able to do in regards to speaking goals, non verbally and so on. Hopefully I can figure this out in my mind soon most importantly for the next appointment.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

The long awaited appointment with the Paeditrician

We had waited for an appointment with the paediatrician to make sure all is well with Josiah. The waitlist was 3-4 months which was quite a while. This was definitely a disappointing experience. I am not sure what I expected but I had hoped there was a key that we could access for further help or some actual experience with what we were dealing with.

The paediatrician himself was fantastic very nice and gave Josiah the opportunity to warm up before he started talking to him. He was able to test him for his IQ and as we had expected he is average. The concern is that he may have some issues with learning that he is coping with very well that we have not been able to see as yet. Most likely not the case but it needs to be checked regardless.

So he agreed with the diagnosis of the psychologist. That is the gist of the whole meeting. We were told that we would most likely be the experts with selective mutism as it is so rare. This was quite disappointing for me and I think I burst into tears at one point. Mainly because we have been working so hard to help him and the journey has only just begun. It is incredibly hard to imagine we have so far to go before he gets to the point where he doesn't experience fear in regards to speaking anymore.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

My Child Won't Talk

Recently in Australia on ABC they had a documentary. It was really good for me, seeing the struggles that the families had with SM and how they responded. It also included great examples of the therapy that was used and how they implemented it to get the children to talk in different environments.

It was really challenging to thinking about the long term because it isn't something that is over with over night. The therapist they referred to wrote the book I have read called the Selective Mutism Resource Manual which is a fantastic resource, her name is Maggie Johnson I believe.