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Concern over relative's toddler not talking

(63 Posts)
lovechoc Sun 27-Sep-09 19:03:59

DS's cousin is the same age as DS and has not said any words yet (he is two and a half years old). He has never said 'mama' or 'dada'. I said to the dad that maybe he ought to check with HV/GP to see if there's anything that's wrong, but the chances are he is just a bit slow with development and it's probably nothing to worry over. He said they aren't worrying and that he will get there eventually.

Would you contact a HV if your child was like this??

I personally was concerned when I heard this (haven't seen their DS for over a year now). What's your opinion? Anyone else experience this?

Hassled Sun 27-Sep-09 19:06:50

It could well be nothing to worry about at all - you hear stories about children who waited until they had complete sentences sussed before they uttered a word - but yes, if the toddler hasn't said a single recognisable word by the age of 2.5 then yes, a HV/GP referral to a SALT would be a good idea, IMO.

ilovesprouts Sun 27-Sep-09 19:09:27

my son does not talk he just baby babbles hes got gdd just waiting for salt

lovechoc Sun 27-Sep-09 19:10:05

that's what I thought Hassled. It seems the parents aren't interested in having him checked though.

Personally, if DS didn't utter one word by 2.5 I'd be at the HV/GP to check his development was ok and the reassurance that everything's fine. I personally hope he isn't going to need help, but surely any parent with a bit common sense would get their child checked out anyway, just to make sure.All the doctor can say is 'you've nothing to worry about, but thanks for coming in with your concerns'.

MIL is very concerned about him.

lovechoc Sun 27-Sep-09 19:11:03

what is GDD?? yes, that's what my nephew does, he apparently just babbles, ilovesprouts.

hope your son gets his appt with salt soon.

moondog Sun 27-Sep-09 19:13:09

2.5 is rather old to be not trying to form any words.
I'm a salt and i owuld be concerned.
How is everything else?
His play skills
Eye contact

Hassled Sun 27-Sep-09 19:15:08

If the parents are reluctant to get help, I guess all you can do is wait for it to be picked up at developmental checks, although I have to say I'm not sure when or if they still happen these days. Unless you happen to share a HV and could mention it to her?

lovechoc Sun 27-Sep-09 19:16:04

Hmm, I have to go on second-hand info here because they dont' really have family in very often in their home...besides the GPs. I assume this is because they don't want their DS compared to others the same age.

Anyway, MIL says he doesn't really play with toys, but he'll sit and watch TV ALL day long. I asked why don't they switch the TV off and she said 'he just switches it back on!' and laughed. I wasn't laughing, just concerned...
He was a late walker, started at 22 months. So possibly he's just slower than average in terms of development. Thanks, moondog. At least a professional is giving their opinion on this, so I know I'm not panicking for nothing (and he's not even my son!).

lovechoc Sun 27-Sep-09 19:18:58

Forgot to add, only a few months ago, MIL said he doesn't really play much with toys, but then a lot of kids don't play with toys, they maybe prefer books, drawing etc.

Perhaps the parents are in denial and don't want to seek help because they are scared of the outcome. They keep themselves to themselves so we only find out how they all are through MIL. They don't visit people.

lovechoc Sun 27-Sep-09 19:21:01

Nice idea Hassled, but we are in different areas (though we live maybe 5 or 10 miles apart). Thank you for the suggestion though

I just want to go over and say something but really I've already mentioned it to BIL so don't want to push any further. It's frustrating to sit back and have to watch this though. MIL said she thinks he may be autistic.

waitingforgodot Sun 27-Sep-09 19:43:49

I understand your concern however at the end of the day it's their business.They know their child way better than you or MIL. Trust me, they will seek help in their own time.

Clary Sun 27-Sep-09 20:15:50

Not playing with toys is a classic pointer to ASD, lovechoc.

Does he point at anything? Can you ask MIL?

Agree tho there's not much you can do if parents not concerned.

bethylou Sun 27-Sep-09 20:21:33

Perhaps it's more about lack of stimulation if the telly is on all day? I have a new friend with a 2.3 year old who is finally starting to show some good signs of developing speech and play skills - it transpires that she never used to talk to him much or try to play. I've been inviting them round to play and just doing what I do with DS and she is really quickly picking up things and doing them too! Might sound a bit sneaky, but I have good and non-patronising intentions (and am a teacher of children with SEN).

lovechoc Sun 27-Sep-09 21:42:04

thank you for everyone's suggestions and opinions. We have deliberately went out our way not to say anything - up until now (when we recently learned that their DS hasn't said one word and is now over 2 and a half years old).

I agree, it's their business but it is also a concern for other members of the family too. It would be wrong to just ignore it and turn a blind eye. However, they have to be given the benefit of the doubt because he is looked after well otherwise.

I just hope it isn't a sign of autism, and that he learns to talk soon.

lovechoc Tue 29-Sep-09 20:31:02

have since remembered that MIL told me a few months ago that DN likes to be tickled but won't let her go near him. He gets upset. Enough for her to be concerned.

He is also not eating solids yet, or food appropriate for his age group. He has only recently started drinking cow's milk.
Could this maybe be GDD? Had a look at a website and it certainly is possible, but any other suggestions?

lovechoc Tue 29-Sep-09 20:31:48

Meant that DN lets his parents tickle him, not anyone else.

KEAWYED Tue 29-Sep-09 20:36:45

My son is 2.7 and doesnt form words very well apart from Ben10.

SaLT have been out to assess hom and said not to worry about autism they are coming out again next week to see him.

Also been drs with him and had him referred for a hearing test.

Surely they would want to do everyting they can. I know my DS2 starts nursery at Easter and I would like him to be able to communicate better by then so he can join in more

traceybath Tue 29-Sep-09 20:37:37

I wonder if they are worried but are downplaying it to others.

My DS2 is 21 months and says very little in terms of recognisable words - probably only 10. I'm aware this means he's slow in this area but after discussing with HV they won't do anything until he turns 2.

However he's very good at pointing/eye contact/playing/following instructions etc so I'm not too worried.

I also know my DH didn't say a great deal until he was 2.5 years old so am hoping its a hereditory thing.

I'd be very wary of using words like 'slow' though when talking to the parents as this will probably make them defensive. Perhaps just comment on how quiet he is . . .

lovechoc Tue 29-Sep-09 21:00:03

ah but this is my point here, everyone is saying that their DS/DD is saying at least a FEW words by 18 months. I'm talking about people who have DC who haven't said one single word by 2.6. I just can't find many others on MN who are experiencing this problem. It's so odd.

lovechoc Tue 29-Sep-09 21:02:24

MIL has asked BIL if he's taken his son to HV yet, she's tried to be subtle (well as subtle as you can be!) about it. He said no. She is very concerned, and she is frightened to say too much incase she won't be allowed any more contact with her GC.

KEAWYED Tue 29-Sep-09 21:02:50

My DS2 says words that only I can make out at the minute but his big brother does a lot of talking for him

lovechoc Tue 29-Sep-09 21:03:37

yes traceybath, spoke to DH today and he thinks it's possibly classic ostrich syndrome the parents have. they just don't want to face it so avoiding taking their ds to see a health professional.

He didn't walk on his own until he was 23 months.

NorkilyChallenged Tue 29-Sep-09 22:05:22

I have no special expertise but it does occur to me that the parents seem to have quite a limiting lifestyle - not having people round, not encouraging contact with the family, etc. Maybe his development is a bit slower because he's not getting the same amount of stimulation and interaction as other children of the same age (I'm really trying to phrase this well, I hope that doesn't come across as offensive). Just what Bethylou was saying about a mother not really talking to or playing with a child...?

fanjoforthemammaries7850 Tue 29-Sep-09 22:23:22

oh please please don't go down the road of blaming the parents for not talking to him/socialising him enough.
My dd has ASD and i socialise with her every day and drive myself insane trying to interact with her to no avail.
And i have had people judging me that it must be my fault and it's so unfair and hurts like hell. Please don't start blaming the parents-every day i see kids who are ignored 100 x more than my dd but are 100 x 6re sociable.

fanjoforthemammaries7850 Tue 29-Sep-09 22:25:03

more sociable, sorry.

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