Street Talk

Many parents of autistic children spend many hours and a great deal of money on speech therapy. We do this in the hope that our children’s ability to communicate will be enhanced and become easier with time. Speech production is a complex skill, especially if we include the social nuances so often implicit in everyday conversations. The subtlties of language are often difficult to nail down. Even sophisticated speakers, the Asperger side of the spectrum, are often flummoxed by their own logic. Frequently, they all miss the realm of speech patterns most common amongst their peers. All to often, parents put heavy burdens upon their children with their high expectations.

………

I am in the middle of my usual list of prompts and cues as we stumble our way through the morning routine before school. Like most youngsters, my children are tuned out and difficult to keep on track. Neither has uttered as much as a syllable in 20 minutes or more. My patience wears thin as I notice that people who were dressed at 7:30 are no longer dressed at 7:35. I know there’s a catch in my voice, “listen up! I need you to put your clothes on!”
“Yadda, yadda, yadda! Your needs!”
“!”

This from the child who has difficulty retrieving the word ‘green.’ All too often it seems that they exceed my expectations.

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