Need some advice on Speech Therapy

Lori - posted on 01/17/2010 ( 20 moms have responded )

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So my daughter is 6 years old, and she is on the higher end of the autism spectrum. SHe was diagnosed almost 2 years ago. Before we moved down south she had a great group of therapist, that loved her, and she loved them. Now that we are here (in a bigger city) everyone is so rushed I guess. ANyway she hates her new speech therapist. She throws horrible fits when we have to go, she does not work with her well at all. To be 100% honest she makes more progress with her speech at home working with me, her dad, and siblings than she does with the therapist. I want to stop taking her, I just don't know if that is the right choice. We were on the waiting list for a year to get her into this place for therapy. ANy advice???

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Stacy - posted on 01/30/2010

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I am a speech therapist and I would first say, talk to your therapist. We need feedback of what the parent thinks is working and what is not. Let them know that it is not going good, and she doesn't like therapy. Let the therapist know that you want to try other options and ways of therapy and would like to try another therapist in their clinic. I know in ours, we do all we can to please our parents and kids though it might be a week or two before we can make the change we usually don't have difficulty making it happen.

Becky Lewis - posted on 01/25/2010

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Ask your peditrician. OR your therapist to recommend you someone in your new area.

Mary - posted on 01/23/2010

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Why not ask for another speech therapist at the same clinic if your child is not happy she will make no progress and your daughter is most important here than hurting someone's feelings. I had to take my Son to speech therapy when he was 5 cause he was dislexic and he came on in leaps and bounds but I did a lot of work with him myself also.good luck .Mary

Kathy - posted on 01/22/2010

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I would look for a different therapist if your daughter doesn't like the one she has now she isn't going to respond to her or try working with her . obviously she really wants to try talking more if she is responding better at home . I would definately look for a new therapist

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Is this the only therapist available at the facility? Are there other facilities available? She should be able to receive speech therapy at school as well. We are lucky enough to have a speech therapist that comes to work with my adopted sons at home twice a week. If it hasn't been very long, give it a little more time, at least while you research your options. Personalities clash all the time, even in situations like these. Just make sure that you always have the appearance of being positive about this therapist, if you don't care for the therapist it is always possible that your daughter could be feeding off of that also. Good luck and go with your gut!

Dori - posted on 01/22/2010

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1. Keep trying to find a fit, because they will help w/ pragmatics. 2. Find an RDI consultant and can continue to be her teachers at home. We started this when my son was 5 and he has closed the gap quickly (6 yr old w/ Aspergers). 3. check out the Linda Mood Bell series of books (Gander Publishing). The visualizing and verbalizing is fabulous and will help a lot fairly quickly. We've done a lot in 3 years, but these programs have given us the best results, so far. Good luck!

Cori - posted on 01/22/2010

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We have a great team at Monarch House it is fairly new it's in burnaby by BCIT.

Sylvia - posted on 01/21/2010

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my son has high functioning autism we have had massive wait too he didnt really make any progress his progress was at home we had 12 weeks and now no speech therapy for well over a yr and he has now gained nearly all the speech sounds he could not do again from home i am still pushing for speech therapy but im just happy his responded so well to me and my approach and has speech same as peers now maybe few sounds not quite perfect but he could only do 2 speech sounds before that g and k for everything now he says his words really well all by his own his words that is lol

ask for new therapist if she is not responding say its nothing personal but the distress caused on getting her there is not worth it its because she is not responding well to this one and continue what your doing at home x

Deb - posted on 01/21/2010

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Hi Lori,
You have a lot of good advice here. As a mother, trust your intuition. Keep in mind that autism spectrum kids respond very strongly to change/disruption in their schedule, as well as sensory triggers. Your daughter may be responding to the change, or to something in the room that we may not notice - flickering lighting or the hum of fluorescent lights, any faint noise to us can be painfully loud to them. Talk to the therapist - work together to rule out any other possibilities. You might find that they, too, are frustrated and, if it does boil down to the her relationship with your daughter, she should help in reassigning your daughter to another therapist. Keep the conversation at a 'team' level. You, hubby, your daughter, and the therapist are a team working for the best interests of your daughter.
Good luck. It's a long road, and so important to have that Team in place early on!

Heather - posted on 01/21/2010

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Look for another therapist and continue working with her at home. Whenever anyone goes to any kind of therapy being able to form a proper relationship with the therapist is important. Not everybody gets along with everybody. Only you can tell yourself whether you think it prudent to stop taking her to her current therapist.

Emily - posted on 01/20/2010

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My son is autistic and I can't speak form the Speech perspective because his speech therapist is great, but I did remove him from Psychology and am getting ready to take him out of Occupational therapy. If they are unhappy about going, then there really is no point in taking them. They are not learning anything. I found with speech everything they do you can do at home working with them one on one.

Kelly - posted on 01/19/2010

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If it were me I would do one of two things: either ask if there is another therapist that she might be able to see within the same group or ask to sit in if you don't already so that you can see what might be upsetting her. If you are still not getting anywhere than I would take her out. If you don't mind me asking what part of the south are you in? It is hard when you child is unhappy yet you are trapped in a bind because of the limit on specialists. Good luck with whatever you decide.

Mayra - posted on 01/19/2010

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Hi Lori, I had to ponder the same question myself last month not because my son didn't get along with his therapist but I just didn't know how benaficial it was for my son. He was diagnosed when he was 2 1/2 years old and spoke very little if any. He is doing really well now. He has transition issues so getting to the speech therapist is always interisting for one and she isn't doing anything I'm not doing at home. I decided to stay because I liked the idea of having a professional seeing him just incase something came up in the future that maybe she would catch that I wouldn't. Her being a professional and all but if your daughter isn't liking her therapist I would totally change her.

Joyce - posted on 01/19/2010

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I would find a different therapist because a bad relationship with any form of therapist can do more damage then good.

Michelle - posted on 01/18/2010

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My daughter has been at the same place for five years. Her first therapist she developed a good rapport and the second one she just didnt. We tried for about 6 months but she and my daughter did not get along. I spoke with the therapist after sessions and realized that it just wasn't a good fit. I asked to have her moved to another therapist even though it meant reworking our schedule, and she went from hating to go to enjoying it again.

Not every pairing will work, just as anywhere else in life. If you can term in that that way and they have other choices you may be able to change.

You could also consider changing to a new place if there are no other options.

Brandie - posted on 01/18/2010

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Perhaps you should ask some questions about the therapy. Are there more therapists where she goes, if so is it possible to see if there would be a more effective pairing for your daughter? Is there and other places or even possibly private therapists (who could come to your home for their sessions) that you could seek out.

It doesn't matter how long she was on a waiting list, if you don't believe it's working that is a problem. Though at least she is making progress at home with you!

I wish you luck in this situation. It is amazing the bond that sometimes forms between our children and the therapists who work with them, hopefully you will find a solution or maybe one will find you.

Kelly - posted on 01/18/2010

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My son is 9 and is autistic also. He has Speech Therapy at school. I tried therapy outside of school and it didn't work. He likes his routine at school with Speech, OP, and APE.

Velvet - posted on 01/17/2010

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Lori, I'm a parent to a 9 year old with autism, as well as a speech therapist who works with children. You don't say how long you've tried with the new therapist. If it hasn't been long, I'd try a little longer and definitely talk to the therapist about your concerns. She may have some insight into what the problem is or be able to switch your daughter to a different therapist. Since she has already had therapy, it may be the change of place and person that is upsetting her, or it could be the way the therapist clicks, or doesn't, with your daughter. Do you stay with her during the sessions or watch through a glass window? If not, I'd try that too. My son had to sit on my lap or very close to me for therapy for a couple of years. His anxiety was just very high outside of our home and it kept him from really benefitting from the therapy if I wasn't right there with him. It's nice to hear that she is making progress at home. You are your child's best advocate and resource. If you think it's best to stop going to the center, then stop. One thing I have learned is that God gives us moms a special ear and eye to know what is best for our kids.

Lori - posted on 01/17/2010

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That is amazing. Good for you and your son!!! My little girl has started making a big progress in the past year. She went from nothing to now in a year she is making 2-3 word sentences. I agree with your advice 100% but I think I needed to hear it from another mom if you know what I mean. My husband really is great, but he also works so much that when it comes to stuff like this he tells me that he knows whatever I think will be the best choice for our kids, well thats all good but its no help, lol!

Barb - posted on 01/17/2010

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Personally I would either ask to be paired with a different therapist as to not traumatize your daughter; or stop taking her all together if she is indeed making more progress at home. I had more success at home with my son Daniel than anywhere else. It was frustrating, but well worth it doing it. He was no verbal until he was almost 6 and now at 17 in a couple of weeks he is very verbal and fully inter-graded into regular classes at his high school, as well as an honor roll student.

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