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FAVOUR PLEASE MUMSNETTERS-Selective Mutism Awareness Week

(20 Posts)
devilsavacado Fri 17-Oct-08 14:10:49

My DS has Selective Mutism and SMIRA ,the Selective Mutism Information and Research Association was running an awareness week from october 5th -12th.although will continue to run until the end of October.

Would any mumsnetters be willing to e mail their local MP's please to ask them to sign the Early Days Motion to raise awareness of SM.

To e mail your local MP they all follow the same format,SURNAME THEN INITIAL (UPPER CASE)
For example a John Wilson MP would be

WILSONJ@parliament.uk

If you could urge them to sign the early days motion tabled by Mark Williams MP in support of Selective Mutism.
Further information can be found at
www.selectivemutism.co.uk

Thank you for your time in reading this and would really appreciate it if you could help.

devilsavacado Fri 17-Oct-08 15:34:50

bump

devilsavacado Fri 17-Oct-08 19:09:59

bump

Tclanger Fri 17-Oct-08 19:21:34

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

devilsavacado Fri 17-Oct-08 19:40:50

http://edmi.parliament.uk/EDMi/EDMDetails.aspx?EDMID=36552&SESSION=891

Thank you,hopefully the link will work.smile

ADragonIs4LifeNotJustHalloween Fri 17-Oct-08 19:44:11

My MP is a w*nker so there isn't much point.

Tclanger Fri 17-Oct-08 20:01:21

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

devilsavacado Fri 17-Oct-08 20:24:36

Hopefully our MP will reply.

wasuup3000 Fri 17-Oct-08 21:15:24

Hi I am new

Here is a bit more info about SM:
SMIRA
Selective Mutism Information & Research Association

Registered Charity No. 1022673

Not everyone has the confidence to speak
everywhere ………
What is Selective Mutism?

Selective Mutism is an anxiety disorder of childhood in which affected children speak fluently in some situations but remain silent in others. The condition is known to begin early in life and can be transitory, such as on starting school or on being admitted to hospital, but in rare cases it can persist right through a child’s school life.

These children usually do not talk to their teachers and may also be silent with their peers, although they do communicate non-verbally. Other combinations of non-speaking can also occur, affecting specific members of the child’s family. Often the child has no other identifiable problems and converses freely at home or with close friends. He/she usually makes age-appropriate progress at school in areas where speaking is not required.

The essential feature of Selective Mutism is the persistent failure to speak in specific social situations (e.g. at school, with peers and/or the teacher), despite being able to speak in other, more familiar situations.
Key Characteristics

Children with Selective Mutism are likely to…

 Find it difficult to look at you when they are anxious – they may turn their heads away and seem to ignore you. You might think that they are being unfriendly, but they are not – they are just not able to respond.

 Not smile, or look blank or expressionless when anxious – in school, they will be feeling anxious most of the time and this is why it is hard for them to smile, laugh or show their true feelings.

 Move stiffly or awkwardly when anxious, or if they think that they are being watched.

 Find it incredibly difficult to answer the register, or to say hello, goodbye or thank-you – this can seem rude or hurtful, but it is not intentional.

 Be slow to respond – in any way – to a question.

 Become more anxious when under pressure to speak.

 Worry more than other people

 Be emotionally sensitive

 Be physically sensitive e.g. to noise, smells, touch, crowds.

 Be very sensitive to the reactions of others – they may misinterpret these reactions.

 Find it difficult to express their own feelings - because it is painful to do so.

Can Selectively Mute children be helped?

Yes, but early identification is important, so that some form of intervention can be planned. The condition may not improve spontaneously. If the child is not speaking after a time of ‘settling in’, then the school’s Special Education Needs Co-ordinator (SENCO) should be consulted and expert advice sought.

ABOUT SMIRA - Selective Mutism Information and Research Association

SMIRA is a charity set up to support parents and carers of children with Selective Mutism and to provide information to professionals working with children who have Selective Mutism.

Teachers, Psychologists, Speech & Language Therapists, Psychiatrists and other interested professionals are also encouraged to join, as there is need for improved awareness, co-operation and co-ordination between all concerned with the treatment of a child.

SMIRA gives parents and professionals an opportunity to feel less isolated and share ideas with others who have experienced similar problems in either home, school or treatment situations.
www. selectivemutism.co.uk

And here is a poem my daughter wrote about how she feels when she can't speak

Traffic Jam

You can’t hear what I want to say
My word’s get stuck in a traffic jam
How will you ever know
Who I am?
You can’t hear what I want to say
You look like a giant
And I want to run away.
You can’t hear what I want to say
I heard you shout
Just the other day
You can’t hear what I want to say
You want me to speak
I feel like a freak.
You can’t hear what I want to say
My word’s get stuck in a traffic jam
How will you ever like
Who I am?

Here is the press release info:

‘Communication is crucial. It is a fundamental human right.’

- The Bercow Report, July 2008

In a bid to raise the profile of selective mutism, the Selective Mutism Information & Research Association (SMIRA) has announced a Selective Mutism Awareness Campaign for the week commencing 6th October 2008.

Selective Mutism is a disorder in which affected children speak fluently in some situations but remain silent in others. The essential feature of the condition is the persistent failure to speak in specific social situations (e.g. at school, with peers and/or the teacher), despite being able to speak in other, more familiar situations.

Selective mutism is believed to affect at least 6 children in every 1,000 yet many people, including health and education professionals, are unaware of the condition or how to recognise it. It is not unusual for children with selective mutism to be misdiagnosed or to be regarded as naughty or stubborn, when they are in fact suffering from anxiety. SMIRA aims to put this right!

Early identification is important so that some form of intervention can be planned, as the condition may not improve spontaneously, leading to the child becoming a withdrawn and socially isolated teenager with an uncertain future. Children with selective mutism are vulnerable to bullying, and may underachieve at school because of their difficulties with communicating. Without help they may continue to have problems into adulthood, affecting their chances of employment and a normal social life.

For more information on selective mutism and SMIRA please visit our website at www.selectivemutism.co.uk or contact Lindsay@selectivemutism.co.uk.

Please please help raise awareness of this condition as this can severely ruin children's life chances if not recognised and
treated early and can continue into adult hood perhaps presenting as severe social phobia and increased anxieties.

TIA

devilsavacado Fri 17-Oct-08 21:35:31

wasuup3000-thank you for adding the additional information,am never too sure how to copy and paste .smile

Tclanger Fri 17-Oct-08 21:37:37

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

devilsavacado Fri 17-Oct-08 21:50:39

Tclanger-I posted on that thread you mentioned also as it was close to home for me.

I have a link to a poster and hand outs with the above information that wasuup3000 posted.
It was kindly sent to me by Lindsay at SMIRA.

If you would like I could forward that e mail to you?

I myself am going to print them out and take into DS's school to raise awareness there.

My DS has a phonological disorder and we think that may be were his SM stems from as he is a perfectionist and hates to gets things wrong.
Hence not wanting to sound words incorrectly .

Like you say it is frustrating when people comment about "just his speech being affected"

Communicating is a big part of life.

wasuup3000 Fri 17-Oct-08 22:11:56

Hi
Tclanger

Thanks for your reply. Another one of my children is getting assessed at the moment for aspergers, dyspraxia or possible communication disorder. So I know it is difficult. People don't quite understand selective mutism-it is good that you do.

Thank you

wasuup3000 Fri 17-Oct-08 22:33:32

Your welcome devil

mum24boyz Sat 18-Oct-08 06:31:03

wasuup3000, i love that poem, i dont have any knowledge of sm, but i sat reading those posts thinking how easy it would be for ds3 to have sm, had he been a less confident child, he is such a perfectionist and has speech and language disorder, and for the life of me i cant think how anyone could think 'only sm' really just wanted to say how good the poem was, but thanks for posting the info too.

Tclanger Sat 18-Oct-08 10:10:31

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

devilsavacado Sat 18-Oct-08 14:28:59

Tclanger-have e mailed you the link to the downloads for the information on selective mutism.smile

Tclanger Sun 19-Oct-08 08:40:35

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

wasuup3000 Sun 19-Oct-08 12:26:57

Thanks TClanger your blog is very interesting!

Tclanger Sun 19-Oct-08 14:30:10

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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