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Does your 4yo struggle to remember names?

(13 Posts)
XianLiax Thu 04-Aug-16 22:52:10

Like asking a family friend "what's your name" six times over the course of one meal, or every morning when you bump into the neighbour. Not in a mischievous way - an air of genuine puzzlement every five minutes or so.

My DS is speech delayed, but otherwise assessed as normal, but the name asking thing is bugging me.

Is it a marker for some kind of short term memory/auditory processing problem? Is it a safe conversational formula? Is it just a kooky thing he does?

Does anybody else's DC do this?

XianLiax Thu 04-Aug-16 23:10:31


GiddyOnZackHunt Thu 04-Aug-16 23:18:42

DS never seemed to remember anyone's name the first few times. He cared more about his name and identity than other people's iyswim.

junebirthdaygirl Thu 04-Aug-16 23:50:26

I came on to say a speech and language delay perhaps. I have seen it in school where children with speech and language difficulties cannot remember their classmates names. They always say " she" even though they have been in the class for at least a year. These are older children. Is he having speech therapy? Maybe the therapist could suggest some ways to help him remember. Is he starting school and does his school know about his speech difficulties?

Mov1ngOn Fri 05-Aug-16 00:15:40


XianLiax Fri 05-Aug-16 07:45:24

The speech therapist is another thread. Seems to think that her job is to write reports, not actually give therapy.

It's not just like forgetting someone someone's name of that you haven't seen for a while. It's the 'asking every five minutes' thing that's drawing my attention. I'm wondering if his speech is delayed because he doesn't retain new vocabulary, rather than he forgets names because he doesn't speak so much iyswim- and I wondered if this was a 'thing'.

XianLiax Fri 05-Aug-16 08:09:53

I don't think it's faceblindness, because he can recognise Nursery friends - waves to them in a crowd. Has securely learnt about 5 names out of 30 in his class - who are the people he's most interested in. The others get the 'what's it's name???' routine.

Not solid on pronouns either FWIW.

Xmasbaby11 Fri 05-Aug-16 08:14:53

Dd is 4 and is fine with names but asks about plans constantly, sometimes 10 plus times in an hour. And I mean a simple plan like 'park then cafe'. I put it down to anxiety and attention seeking.

Babetti Fri 05-Aug-16 08:24:22

Two of my nephews had something similar at 4 / 5. They didn't distinguish between similar people in the family. So they would call me either by my name or my sister's name and the same with her. They confused our husband / partners names too. It was pretty constant - almost like they didn't see that we were different people but more a 'category'. They're grew out of it though!

Footle Fri 05-Aug-16 08:30:02

I don't have any experience of children doing this and I'd find it surprising. It's certainly worth pursuing it with SALT, perhaps after getting the GP's opinion.

LaContessaDiPlump Fri 05-Aug-16 08:33:50

Both my DSs (4 and 5yo) have attention spans similar to those of mayflies. They remember the facts they find interesting (i.e. names of friends) and exhibit a healthy disregard for almost everything else. They have both been known to forget people's names halfway through a conversation and frequently greet me as 'DaddymummydaddyContessaMUMMY' in their attempts to use the correct monicker (I can be harsh when improperly identified)!

In short I think he sounds ok grin

XianLiax Fri 05-Aug-16 08:50:44

I'm not sure it's an attention span thing per se.

He does the same thing with his dinosaurs. Get really involved in a long game - but keep asking what they are called.

In that case though I get the sense he knows the names, but he likes the validation of an adult conforming it for him iyswim. So I'll say 'That's T-Rex/Pterodactyl/Triceratops' - and he'll go away looking quietly satisfied.

XianLiax Fri 05-Aug-16 13:50:01


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