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December 22, 2007

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Emily

Hi, Susan--

Our son also cluttered his efforts at linear conversation with so much "noise"--random interjections, non sequiturs, exclamations, echolalia--that we never knew quite what he was talking about. It's been almost three years since that time, and he now has achieved a certain linearity in his discussions. His recitations of his day are reminiscent of his earlier discourses, but at least I get kind of a picture of how things went when I wasn't around.

Our youngest does not speak. Well, he says "da," but he's delayed. Yet I know that he understands language (he demonstrates through his behavior that he has good receptive language), and I also believe that he himself is thinking in "language." It just doesn't come out of his mouth.

I think many many people with different kinds of brain function/structure/disorders DO use language internally that does not translate externally. Hell, I find myself speaking telegrapically, monosyllabically A LOT, just because it's too wearying to parse all the noise in my brain and pick out a couple of decent sentences for external communication. People think I'm rude or brusque or...well, different things, but I'm not trying to be. And just because I'm not always prolix (well, obviously, I am sometimes) doesn't mean there aren't a million words flying around inside, reasonably coherently.

Niksmom

"I've had to work harder, be more flexible, approach things differently. And when it works? Oh my God. Nothing like it."

You said a mouthful, Mama! That sums it up right there. I experience this daily with Nik and have to remind others around us that he DOES understand and responds but they have to be willing to watch and listen to the ways he communicates. The kid's got a lot to say these days!

drama mama

Hello darlink.

For what it's worth, since I've had the honor of meeting the boy - I'll say this: I think it's all there. I'm no expert, of course, just a mom with a kid on the spectrum, a few year's down the road. But he's doing great. You've got a great model.

Sometimes I step back and find it incredible that children are supposed to be on the same timeline. I look at my daughter's development and see so much of her questionable behavior as processing; her way of figuring stuff out. It came. On her time.

Patience. Love.

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