To be worried about him(16 Posts)
My nephew is 2 years old and does not speak at all. I know my sister is worried, but she will not really talk about it and no-one wants to push the matter with her as it obviously potentially very emotive. She did however miss his yearly checkup and they have no contact with HV/ GP etc, so no-one 'in the system', as it were, is aware. I know it is not my business, but I am slightly worried that perhaps they should be getting a professional opinion, even just to say it is nothing to worry about. I am probably having my opinion influenced by knowing that he watches TV all day, and rarely does anything else, and that home can be very stressful due to some parental issues. All quite upsetting really.
AIBU to be concerned? Should I just keep out of it all?
YANBU to be concerned but you should keep out of it. It will get picked up when he starts preschool. All you can do is support her as best you can.
It sounds like you're right to be concerned but to be honest, I don't think there's anything you can do other than try to take the boy for a couple of hours and give him something other than watching tv to do and see whether some interaction improves the situation for him.
IF you're feeling brave enough suggest she goes to the HV to get his hearing checked. Certainly with my DC the late speech was linked to hearing problems.
He has no words at all? Can he communicate in other ways? Understand what is said to him?
YANBU to be concerned but do try not to allocate blame (even in the privacy of your head). If you are close to your sister and she confides in you, you could suggest she talk to her GP or HV. But unless she is severely neglecting him (in which case call SS), or there is domestic violence (ditto) it is really unlikely that this is the result of his home situation.
Thanks for replies. I apologise if it sounded like I am apportioning blame. What I meant about the TV and stressful atmosphere is that in some ways I hope it is just a bit of a delay due to this and that he will catch up when he gets to preschool etc. I love my sister and we have always been very close but I am her big sister and I know she thinks I judge her (I don't), and she is very defensive so I don't think I could ever say anything. I try to just be there to listen to her and to be positive for her, making it clear she can talk to me about anything.
He makes a three sounds that are clearly meant to be mum/ dad/ juice. And he does seem to understand things sometimes. But he does not engage with anyone very often, preferring the TV.
Has she got his name down for pre-school/nursery?
any particular reason why she's not sending him?
my feeling (so not necessarily right) is that she doesn't want to interact with anyone who will have an opinion on how she does things. She is like this in other areas of her life also, has avoided ever having a 'proper' job etc. She is also very disorganised and having marital issues so things are a little chaotic in their house at the moment. This aside she of course loves her son and cares for him well, if you see what I mean, I'm not trying to imply she is a bad mum. I feel disloyal for having even started this thread but I am worried.
I think you should say something, she needs to see a doctor (is she one of those people who don't trust doctors and modern medicine?). Maybe not to her because she might not listen to you. Is there another family member she looks up to or would listen to?
Have a look at this and score it from what you know of him. www.m-chat.org/mchat.php
If you think the score is significant enough to warrant concern, you could steer the conversation around to child development in a someone was worried about their toddler and came across this test, thought you may be interested sort of way, and give her the link for the test and she may wake up to his differences and do something about it because early intervention is supposed to help children who need it.
It will be picked up at school, but with language problems they need to be confronted as soon as possible, and your sister sounds as though she will not follow through activities at home even when the problem is identified. As you are a close relative I think should intervene/encourage as much as possible; only you know how your sister will react but the child's development is paramount.
I think approaching your sister about a hearing test is a good idea. Yes you can leave it till preschool but by then, another year will have passed and professionals agree early intervention is the best way forward.
My own DS has disordered speech and I had him referred for hearing test early on he was in speech therapy by 2 and a half. The work began early which meant he has progressed and up to speed as he should be now. Also, depending on where you live, the waiting lists are long so best to start the ball rolling ASAP.
If there is a problem it needs checking and support from now. If she waits till school and he is not able to verbally communicate at that point he will likely be excluded from mainstream school as my nephew has been. He got great support from a young age but still wasn't speaking well at school time so is now in a special school when he can be supported better. It's working out great but I know his mum did everything possible to avoid this. Some speech issues can be improved enough for a child to be fine by school time. So broach the subject, maybe wait till he's 2.5 and at that point do not under any circumstances mention TV usage or family stress because in all honesty kids who watch a lot of TV can still usually speak very well.
I just wanted to say thanks for all the help here, I really appreciate it.
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