By: Jean Jardine Miller
Despite the greater understanding created by significant research during the last decade, children with selective mutism are still, far too often, misdiagnosed. The inability to speak is attributed to shyness, developmental delay, learning disabilities or autism. Worse, children are accused of being defiant, oppositional, manipulative or insolent. They are alternately punished and bribed.
Their school life becomes a nightmare as they are made to repeat grades or attend inappropriate special education classes. And their parents undergo suspicion, or sometimes even charges, of child abuse. And, we’ll point out right here and now, that there is absolutely no evidence that the selective mutism is caused by abuse or neglect by parents.
Featured Organization: Selective Mutism Group ~ Childhood Anxiety Network (SMG)
Jean Jardine Miller is the author of KIRSTIN’S STORY: no place to stand and compiler of Songs of My Soul. More information on these books, and where to purchase them, is available at www.designandcopy.ca/jardinemiller
We thank Selective Mutism Group ~ Childhood Anxiety Network for allowing PediaStaff to reprint their article.
Selective Mutism Group (SMG), part of the Childhood Anxiety Network, is the nation’s premier resource for information on Selective Mutism (SM). SMG, is a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing information, resources and support to those impacted by a child with the anxiety disorder known as Selective Mutism (SM). Visit their website at :www.selectivemutism.org