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Wife and mother of a Selective Mutism person

Asked By: Anonymous     Views: 1,409 times

My 5 year old shows all SM signs.  We have an IEP meeting next week and I'm concerned due to the Special Ed. teacher will be there.  My son's teachers - he's in an extremely large class with two teachers, know he's smart.  I sent a handout from Wiki on interventions used for SM.  Secondly, my husband has social anxiety symptoms.  He's not on board with my son's diagnosis - which I have determined.  How can I get him on board? My husband has learned to interact 1:1 well, but rarely initiates interaction with others and in my opinion avoids situations where he will be around new people.  He even has anxiety about people watching him eat.  He's gained some weight and does not go to church because he fears people will think he's fat.  Several of his family members have SM or social anxiety traits, in my opinion.  Finally, our nearly 3 year old shows some anxiety signs, such as twirls hair to point of falling out, clingly, etc., but he does interact with other kids, just cautiously.  What can I do to advocate for my son and get my husband on board.

Regarding your son; it is important that you understand the difference between constructive and non-constructive accommodation at school. In other words, is the objective to just "accomodate" the SM which is classified as a "hidden handicap" and therfore eligible for a 504 plan, or is the objective to facilitate mental health and the child's potential. It's complicated. If the latter, it is imperative that parents, as the primary caregivers, learn and put into effect an empowering and non-enabling strategy before the school is able to do so. Regarding your husband; this is a the typical roadblock that prevents families from getting help. His denial will worsen your son's avoidant pathology if he just waits for him to grow out of the problem. Re:"How can you get your husband on board"...by educating him, making a power play, or finding a magician. Why don't you invite him to listen to the relevant interviews in our Clinical Interviews Library.  Maybe he would respect the input of a professional baseball player who went through the healing process with his daughter at the free seminar.

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