Thursday, February 5, 2015

Muddling through Selective Mutism for me was like diving in to a muddy pool.  All the information all coming at me all seeming to tell me so many different things.  Reward talking, don't reward talking, be open about it, pretend like nothing has changed.  I was so lost, I didn't know anyone whose child just woke up one morning and didn't speak a word to anyone for 6 months.  We lived up North, there weren't a lot of resources available that specialized in Selective Mutism, but there were amazing Doctors, Nurses, Social Workers, Speech Language Pathologists, Therapists, Teachers, and Friends who learned about SM Along with us. 

One of the biggest challenges for me to over come was that there isn't one magic cure, what works for one child won't necessarily work for another.  We found Big Guy responded best to a reward system - not a prize system but a reward system special fun family activities (with the odd dollar store prize thrown in every now and then) like pull out the sofa with a big bowl of popcorn and having a movie night pretend sleep over or Sundae Day. 
This was our first of many charts, simple but Big Guy loved sounding out the words and seeing what "prize" lay behind.   He chose the stickers that went on the board, helped me make the board and then put it up in our kitchen.  When he wanted to earn a prize he knew he could come get me and we would sound out the word together.  That board hung on the wall in the kitchen for weeks before we opened a single door.  But when he sounded out his first word it was amazing.

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