I am concerned about my 8 year old daugher

Jacobariel

New Member
Hello guys I am new here and forgive me if I am posting on the wrong part of the forum but I am a very worried father. My daughter is 8 years old and since she was of talking age she had to receive Speech Therapy because she had a hard time with articulation and could not fold her tongue. For many years she received therapy for her speech and finally this past May she graduated from Speech Therapy however, she is still having some issues even though she has come a long way. Her teachers then and now have said she does not interact with other children in class she is quiet and barely speaks. She follows but does not lead. When she is around us like her mother and two brothers she interacts with us and dances and talks to us sometimes but other times she does not say much or does not socialize with us much. When she is around other family that she knows well like her grandparents she does not interact with them and comes across as shy and will usually only speak if you ask her to say like thank you for example.
Lately though since maybe a month ago we have noticed she has been giggling and making facial expressions while talking to herself. When we ask her what are you giggling or talking about she says she is reenacting a movie scene from Ratatouille or says I am thinking or will say I am fine when you keep asking her. Sometimes I think she worries too much about things I don't know but it worries me because like last night I walked in her room an she was awake late at night and told me she was thinking about family and presents and stuff that should not be on her mind so late at night. She is going to see her pediatrician tomorrow and will mention all this and Thursday she is being tested at school.
I thought about posting here to see what you guys think may be going on.
 

ksm

Well-Known Member
Is she doing ok academically at school? Maybe the speech issues has made it difficult to talk with her peers. She, and they, probably remember the struggles, and some kids are unkind.

Listen to your family doctor and maybe seek a child psychologist for further help.

Ksm

Ps...lots of well adjusted adults did not always have an easy childhood.
 

Jacobariel

New Member
Is she doing ok academically at school? Maybe the speech issues has made it difficult to talk with her peers. She, and they, probably remember the struggles, and some kids are unkind.

Listen to your family doctor and maybe seek a child psychologist for further help.

Ksm

Ps...lots of well adjusted adults did not always have an easy chi
She is in second grade and she has had a hard time focusing but has managed to make fair grades this year but she did repeat Kinder because her teacher thought she was not ready to advance at the time.
My concern is now that recently she is in her own world with the giggles and facial expressions and talking quietly to herself that she will focus even less and things get worse.
My wife and I have thought about what you said. Maybe she is self conscious about her speech and is afraid to show her personality.
She has also spent time watching videos on Barbie dolls and little girls holding the dolls and narrating a story and also videos on how girls do summersaults and she spends a lot of time doing them. It could be that she is thinking about all that and has her little own little world on her mind.
 

Jacobariel

New Member
I did that with the Barbie dolls. Are her siblings close to her age?
She has an 18 year and 10 year old brother. She plays with the 10 year old from time to time. Lately though it's a challenge to get her to play. Like for example yesterday I had to tell her over and over to play with me and the 10 year old catch. She would not respond or after a little while would say no. I had to motivate her by playing with her brother and say come on he is going to beat you if you don't play until she finally got involved and played with us. Later she said she wanted to watch a movie and I put on a movie for her but I could see her talking and making faces. She usually does the talking and facial thing then covers her eyes and buries her face on the couch like if she was counting and back to talking, gestures etc.
 

Deni D

Well-Known Member
Jacobariel, she sounds really cute. Anyway having her evaluated neurologically is probably a good idea, a psycho-neurological evaluation. I was extremely shy as a child, in my case it was because I didn't know how to act around children my age, couldn't figure out the secret code and took everything to heart wondering if I did or said the right thing all of the time. If you think she might have something like that going on there are social skills classes these days. You could find a group her age and see what she thinks of it. Also for playing, what about playing something you know she likes to do. Like with the dolls, get down on the floor and play side by side with her and see if she brings that rich inner world out for you to see.
 

Jacobariel

New Member
Jacobariel, she sounds really cute. Anyway having her evaluated neurologically is probably a good idea, a psycho-neurological evaluation. I was extremely shy as a child, in my case it was because I didn't know how to act around children my age, couldn't figure out the secret code and took everything to heart wondering if I did or said the right thing all of the time. If you think she might have something like that going on there are social skills classes these days. You could find a group her age and see what she thinks of it. Also for playing, what about playing something you know she likes to do. Like with the dolls, get down on the floor and play side by side with her and see if she brings that rich inner world out for you to see.
Great advise. She is going to be tested tomorrow academically and if I am not mistaking eventually by a psychologist. There is a series of tests shes having.
I have played with her tea time and with her dollhouse and she was fine before all this but great advise I will do that again now that she is going through this and see how she responds.
 

susiestar

Roll With It
There could be a lot of things going on with her. I would look for a neuropsychologist. They are special and are usually at children's hospitals. They do very in depth testing and often give better answers than regular child psychologists/psychiatrists. It can take months to get in, and you will need a referral from her pediatrician.

She also may have sensory issues. You need an occupational therapist to test for that. Does she seek out or avoid certain things? Is she picky about her food? Does she look for loud noises or avoid them like the plague? Sensory issues can make life very difficult. It often can feel like the world is attacking you on every front. I have my own sensory issues. I am the pickiest eater in my house and I always was. My kids' food preferences and allergies were nothing compared to my pickiness. I cannot wear - or even touch - some fabrics and textures. I can't pull cotton out of a bottle of medicine. It just feels awful to me. I never touch cotton balls. I cannot tolerate loud noises. I don't like a lot of noise. I hate anything electronic that talks to me or beeps at me. Alexa and I are NOT friends, lol. It can be hard to navigate the world when so much of it feels awful to you. I never talked to anyone about most of this until my own kids were being tested for sensory issues. My youngest son used to sit on his head (upside down) to read and watch tv. I just thought he was a weird kid. As long as he kept his feet out of other people's faces, it didn't bother me. That deep pressure on his head was actually a sensation he was drawn to and helped him calm down when overwhelmed. He would get very overwhelmed, to the point he would just stop registering the outside world. This was a problem at school because going to school every day in the very early grades was too much for him. I let school see what he was like when he was overwhelmed and scared his teacher half to death. He crawled under a table and curled up into a ball and wouldn't react to anyone. I was sitting in the car reading a book when they called me. I knew it would happen, and I hated it, but I knew that if school didn't see the problem, we would have attendance issues.

His sensory issues were at the more severe end of the spectrum. Most kids with sensory issues do not react like he did. They are on a spectrum with more and less severe ranges of behavior.

The great thing about sensory issues is that you can do a LOT to help them. Unlike other therapies, the things that will help your child are things they are drawn to. So this was therapy that I didn't have to fight my kids over. The occupational therapist we saw gave me a very long list of toys, art projects, various things that would help my son. We had more than 75% of that list because Grandma and Grandpa always indulged the kids a lot. There is even a therapy that can help the brain process sensory issues better (essentially rewiring how the brain handles sensory input) that does not involve any medication. It is called brushing therapy and it involves going over the body in a specific pattern with a surgical scrub brush (very soft brush with no soap). You then follow it with joint compressions. It really can make a big difference. You MUST be taught this by an occupational therapist because if you brush certain areas you can create real physical problems for the child. It is easy to do, once you know how. And most kids like it.

Schools have occupational therapists who can test your child. I strongly urge you to also get a private evaluation if at all possible. School therapists will test for how the child reacts in school only. Private therapists test for how the child reacts to their entire world, which is very different.

I wasn't always a talker either. I was Chatty Kathy at home, but at school? Not nearly so much. Especially starting around 2nd and 3rd grade. I just didn't understand what the other kids were talking about or why they were interested in certain things. I still have no idea why sports involving balls are entertaining to people. After a while, I got tired of the teasing over various things, so I stopped talking. I went an entire year (5th grade) without talking to much of anyone outside the librarian. I was in a parochial school and flat out refused to talk to the priest. Not even during confession would I talk to him. I had books and generally read and kept to myself. My parents had no idea this was happening. No one from school called them about this. This may be part of what your daughter has going on.

I hope something here is helpful. If you need to know more on sensory issues and Sensory Integration Disorder, the best book I can recommend is The Out of Sync Child by Kranowitz. It really explains sensory issues and how to help them. The same author also wrote The Out of Sync Child Has Fun. It is packed full of activities that help treat whatever specific sensory areas that are helpful. It is one of the most fun and useful books I have ever owned. We wore out copy after copy of it. At one point I swore the neighborhood kids had cameras on us because every single time I got the book out, kids just showed up in our yard, wanting to play. Again, the activities your child would find fun are generally the activities that will help them.
 

BusynMember

Well-Known Member
I would make sure she is tested by a neuropsycholigist for autism. Not a pediatrician.or therapist or regular psychologist. Autism is a neurological glitch in the brain that causes strange and angry behaviors. It is treatable. Girl autism gets missed often as it is different from how boys present with it. And more boys have it than girls so professionals don't see as many female autistics as males with it.

A nueropsycholigist is a psychologist with special training in the brain. It is neither a neurologist or plain.psychologist.

Hugs and love.
 

Jacobariel

New Member
I would make sure she is tested by a neuropsycholigist for autism. Not a pediatrician.or therapist or regular psychologist. Autism is a neurological glitch in the brain that causes strange and angry behaviors. It is treatable. Girl autism gets missed often as it is different from how boys present with it. And more boys have it than girls so professionals don't see as many female autistics as males with it.

A nueropsycholigist is a psychologist with special training in the brain. It is neither a neurologist or plain.psychologist.

Hugs and love.
I know you can't diagnose without seeing her and you can't go by what I have said here let alone you aren't a neuropsychologist but based on my description does it sound like she has autism to you?
 

Copabanana

Well-Known Member
I agree with Susie. Assuming you live in the US I would call a regional Children's Hospital to the Child Development Center and I would ask for a comprehensive neuropsychiatric examination. She will be evaluated by a team of professionals that at a minimum should include a neuropsychologist, a social worker, a child psychiatrist, and possibly a child neurologist. You will get a written evaluation and recommendations for treatment. You will also receive some workable diagnoses or rule outs.

Some other ideas:

Along with speech issues, there are language issues that are related but different.

School testing is not to be relied upon without additional testing that is obtained by non-biased professionals. Schools are biased to not provide services. I am sorry to say this but I worked on school IEP teams. These services are very expensive for school districts that are strapped for cash. They will quite often take an adversarial position with parents, to avoid the legal commitment to provide services. School psychologists most of the time where I live are masters levels. They do not have the extensive and advanced training that has a child neuropsychologist., who has a lot of advanced and specialized training in testing and observation to evaluate brain dysfunction, behavioral problems, developmental disorders, intelligence, personality and mental illnesses, acute and chronic. These doctors will examine your child with neutrality only wanting to uncover and to help you meet her needs.

While school districts may test your child, there has to be a very high bar to receive services. Usually, a shy, quiet child who does not make trouble for the teacher, goes unseen and her problems unaddressed. That is my experience. If you are able, you are far better off seeking your own evaluation, I believe. When I took my son I don't believe I paid anything, but it was many years ago. University Medical Centers too also may have these services.
 

TiredHusbandDad

New Member
My 2 cents: I think there's a chance that her problem could have started from home(mentally and physically). Children feed off of others. Whatever insecurities she has could be from her knowing that you are worried and maybe she feels odd or different. My daughter used to say "bish," instead of fish. My wife tried and couldn't get her to say fish. I knew my daughter loved me and would do anything I wanted her to. I knew she trusted and loved me to death. I slowed down and figured out a way for her to understand. I showed her how she was holding her tongue, mouth, etc. Then I showed her how to do it correctly. She said "fish" within 5 minutes and never said "bish" again. But the first thing is they have to feel loved and accepted, by you. I personally wouldn't rely on another person to fix something like this. Even if you have to educate yourself in order to help her. Make sure she knows, really knows that you really love and accept her, first.
 

BusynMember

Well-Known Member
I think if you read up on.it you will see that it is good to check it out. Otherwise you could be treating a neurological problem as a psychiatric problem. I have a niece and nephew with autism who were diagnosed late and my young grandson has autism. We took him to a neuropsycholigist and he is getting the type.of help he needs and is doing wonderfully. I think a neuropsycholigist is a good.place to start for all "different" children. They are in my opinion the best diagnosticians. They can diagnose both neurological and psychological disorders, unlike plain therapists. Therapists will automatically say it's psychological only and that can be wrong. Of course you can do what you like. We will all support you. My own opinion is not to try to figure it out on your own. We did that with our oldest daughter with very poor results. We just thought if we loved her enough.....

Nobody here can diagnose your daughter. The best we can do is to tell you which professionals have helped us the most.

I wish you the best of luck and send prayers, love and hugs ❤️
 
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TiredHusbandDad

New Member
I think if you read up on.it you will see that it is good to check it out. Otherwise you could be treating a neurological problem as a psychiatric problem. I have a niece and nephew with autism who were diagnosed late and my young grandson has autism. We took him to a neuropsycholigist and he is getting the type.of help he needs and is doing wonderfully. I think a neuropsycholigist is a good.place to start for all "different" children. They are in my opinion the best diagnosticians. They can diagnose both neurological and psychological disorders, unlike plain therapists. Therapists will automatically say it's psychological only and that can be wrong. Of course you can do what you like. We will all support you. My own opinion is not to try to figure it out on your own. We did that with our oldest daughter with very poor results. We just thought if we loved her enough.....

Nobody here can diagnose your daughter. The best we can do is to tell you which professionals have helped us the most.

I wish you the best of luck and send prayers, love and hugs ❤️
If you thought just loving her enough was the answer...smh. That will never work.
 

BusynMember

Well-Known Member
No. And once we wanted to take her to therapy, which we didn't know much about, she would not speak. Our talkative defiant child would just sit and look mad. On top of that she would throw a fit before going so we had to catch her and force her into the car. I think it's best to take them young and have done this with our grandson. Currently our grandson is in the custody of our other daughter because the one who brought me here is homeless and a drug addict.
 
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