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Old 04-17-2017, 02:31 PM   #1
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Thank you DocJohn for this forum.

I have a daughter who has selective mutism along with ASD. She really struggles is life. She won't leave the house either. I worry for her future.
She see's a therapist next week so I hope they can help.
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Old 04-17-2017, 05:49 PM   #2
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What are the symptoms of selective mutism that you notice? How often do they happen to your daughter?
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Old 04-18-2017, 04:14 AM   #3
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She won't talk around people. She talks to me and her brother and sisters. She has severe anxiety, Won't leave the house. She likes to stay at home. They happen all the time.
The only time she does leave the house is if she has an appointment. She is seeing a therapist on Monday so hopefully she can help her.. She did see a therapist a few years a go but because she wouldn't talk they discharged her which didn't help.
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Old 04-19-2017, 07:22 PM   #4
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This might seem like a silly question/suggestion... but would she find it easier to write things down beforehand? Specific questions she has, issues she deals with... that way it 'might' ease some of the anxiety down when she comes face to face with the therapist as the potentially awkward part is (opening up) is all written down for them to read.

I don't have selective mutism, though when it comes to 'opening up' especially with strangers, I find it very hard... so by doing the above first in the comfort of my own surroundings (home), it does help.
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Old 04-20-2017, 09:39 AM   #5
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No it's not a silly question at all. When she saw her last therapist they did ask her to write down but she wouldn't do it..
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Old 04-20-2017, 02:13 PM   #6
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I have hear other people doing that and it seemed to help. Sorry Lavender there is resistance on her part.

Are you going to be in the appointment with her? If so you might ask if you could be waiting outside for part of the appointment if you and she think she might be more willing to open up without you sitting there. Parents can be very intimidating to children of all ages.
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Old 04-20-2017, 02:18 PM   #7
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Yeah I am going with her, That is another thing she won't go out on her own, I think she has a big fear that something is going to happen to her. If she goes in the appointment alone then she still won't talk, We have tried it before and she won't talk. It is difficult for her. I am starting to think there is something else wrong with her. She is 19 and is so scared of almost everything. To me it feels like the house is a very safe place for her. I am truly worried.
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Old 04-21-2017, 01:45 PM   #8
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Lavender that sounds like it must be stressful on you too. Hope you are finding ways to self care so that you feel good and do not get affected by all this stuff she is going through.
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Old 04-23-2017, 07:48 AM   #9
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I don't know if this will help at all, but it might, so I want to share with you. I don't talk much, especially not in situations that are difficult, such as therapy. I have been with my current therapist a year now and still have sessions where I do not utter a word. But, we have found ways of working around this. A huge part of me is living in a huge amount of fear too, so I know it can be a terrible, terrible world.

In the first instance, I took in some writings and showed them to my T, so she knew some of what I was dealing with as a client. So she knew what I was looking for in a
therapist (patient, quiet, calm, understanding, use of nurturing touch when ready, etc etc).

After that first session, I know we spent several in a lot of silence, and it is important to find a therapist that is comfortable with this, because a lot, A LOT, are not. She tried to find ways of interacting with me, and it worked, slowly but surely. She is used to working with children, so I think that helped, and we just sat and looked at flashcards or passed a ball between us, played hunt the thimble, played a game where I had to guess what I was holding without looking at it (that took some trust that she didn't have anything horrible in her bag!!), played a game where we drew shapes and the other had to make a picture out of it. Basically, just interacting, and through this there was a need for a few innocuous words to be spoken. It helped.

After a while, we found that I find writing things down much easier and so now, I bring in things that I have written, and will either read them or give them to her to read, aloud mostly. I also write instead of talking, so some sessions she will be the only one using her voice, as I write replies or comments.

It is very, very, very slow going, so you really need a patient therapist, but it is possible.

I had a therapist when I was 14, but the only thing they kept saying was "I cant help you if you wont talk". I took that to mean that I had to talk to be helped but I know differently now. There is a way around this. Any therapist who says that is, in my opinion, substandard. It is their problem, their inability, their uselessness as a therapist because it is they who cannot find a way to access this client, to reach them, to help them.

Hope that helps in some way, and please feel free to PM me if you would like any more info. I don't know if I have selective mutism, but I do choose not to talk, an awful lot of the time, when most probably would, so I guess it would fit.
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Old 04-24-2017, 02:29 PM   #10
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Well the therapist cancelled the this morning because he is sick so I guess we will have to wait. They are sending another appointment in the post.

Waterbear, Thank you for sharing. It sounds like a lot like my daughter. It is really hard for my daughter and I think the therapists give up because she won't talk. Hopefully though this one will understand seeing that they are especially for ASD i think, Not sure about the selective mutism though.

Saturday she became upset because I wanted her to come out for the day. She said she felt sick (she usually says this when she is anxious) We didn't end up going because of the way she is. This morning was another performance because she was meant to be seeing a therapist, She was relieved when they phoned to cancel.
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