Eye contact ?

Melissa - posted on 01/07/2010 ( 21 moms have responded )

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UPDATE (November 18th, 2012) : My daughter is now 3 1/2 years old. I am now 100% confidant that she does not have autism. I did a lot of research and used several strategies to improve eye-contact and communication skills when she was a baby and saw huge improvements within a few months. Please e-mail me at : savoiempsychologie@yahoo.ca if you would like to know more about my experience and strategies used.



OLD POST : Hi, I'm worried about my almost 7 month old baby. I seem to have a hard time getting her to make eye contact. She does it occasionally, when I repeat her name and try to catch her eye, and usually when I sing to her, but she seems much more interested in the rest of her environement. When she does make eye contact, it's usually not for more than 2 seconds, although she has mantained eye contact for over 10 seconds. She does smile often as a reaction to people smiling or doing things to make her laugh (such as playing pee-ka-boo), so there is some social interaction...She is cooing, but not really babbling, although she has done it a few times. Last check up our family Doctor said she seems healthy and the nurse that gave her her last vaccine said that at that age it's normal to only get a few seconds of eye contact at a time, but I'm still worried. Does anyone else have these same worries for their baby? What is normal for a 6-7 month old?

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Melissa - posted on 11/18/2012

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Hi everyone, my daughter is 3 1/2 now, she is doing great. I am 100% confidant that she does not have autism...Please, if you have any questions, and would like some tips on how to work on improving your baby's eye-contact...e-mail me at : savoiempsychologie@yahoo.ca

Elizabeth - posted on 05/01/2013

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Hello everyone,

My little girl is 5 months old and sounds so similar to your babies. It sometimes feels a real effort to engage her socially, she can only hold eye contact for a few seconds and she appears to be far more interested in her environment rather than people and faces. Sometimes she will do all she can to avoid eye contact- squirming, turning head away etc. She does smile when someone pays attention to her but it is often fleeting and she looks away while doing it. Strangely when lying on her back she is much better and can be very interactive.

I'm going out my mind with worry. We have already seen a paediatrician who says she does not think there is a problem but when i am with her day to day and can see how different she is to other babies that want to engage I am not reassured.

I was wondering if there are any updates or any helpful advice anyone can give on this. I suppose it is just nice to know that you are not alone. Andrea I hope things have improved for you.

CHERYL - posted on 04/04/2010

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I TO HAVE TWINS AND ONE ALWAYS LOOKS STAIGHT INTO MY EYES WHEN WE R TALKING AND LIKE TO LOOK AT PEOPLE THE OTHER JUST WANT TO PLAY AND IS ALWAYS MORE INTERESTED IN EVERYTHING AROUND HIM I JUST THOURGHT IT WAS THEIR PERSONALITIES MY MUM JOKES HE JUST NEVER GONE LISTEN TO ME.

Melissa - posted on 01/08/2010

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Hi Jennifer. I've been doing alot of research on autism these past few days,and I think we worry too much. Here are some of the early warning signs of autism:

-By 6 months baby does not (or VERY RARELY) smile back, react to parent's presence, react to parent's attemps to make baby smile (ex., playing pee-ka-boo), coo, make eye contact (or has "empty/hallow" look), often makes high ptiched squeals, is not comforted by parent picking them up, by 9 months baby does not babble, etc.


My cousin is also autistic. Because of this and because I am so familiar with the signs of autism, I tend to focus on what "could" be signs of autism rather behavior that would indicate otherwise. For instance, I mostly notice when she shows lack of social interest, rather than when she DOES. Today I made an effort to notice the social connection, and I realized that there is one. When I leave for a while then come back, if I say her name and smile, she'll usually look at me and smile, and I noticed today that she did make eye contact quite often and for longer than 5 seconds, sometimes over 10-15 seconds, and their was alot of smiling and reacting to my gestures, sometimes cooing. Worrying about autism made me focus on all the times she didn't react, but after making the effort to focus on the times she did, I realized her social interaction is really not that bad. I do have to make some effort to get her attention probably 25% of the time, but it's not as bad as I thought... I did notice that it is worse when she is tired...then it takes alot more effort to get her attention.

I still have some worry, but I think it's unjustified ! I wanted to share this with you in case you're reacting to your fear in the same way that I am...Tomorow, I challenge you to ignore what you see as possible signs of autism and focus on behaviors that indicate otherwise and let me know if you see things the same ! It's gonna be harder for you because it will be tempting to compare with her twin brother...babies are all different, the important thing is that there IS a social connection, you know it, you feel it, and even if she doesn't respond all the time, if she does it often, then It's all good ! :-)

I hope this helps...and thanks for sharing with me. Talking with you, someone else who has the same problem as me, has halped me see things more objectively.

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Bibbi - posted on 07/01/2014

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Hi Melissa. I ave a 7.5month old who doesn't seem to hold eye contact. I read your reply with great interest. He isn't rolling over or sitting up properly. He will hold eye contact with his 22 month old sister but I'm am not 100% sure its eye contact or just from the fact she makes him laugh. I m very worried as he isn't a cuddly baby either. He never snuggles into my shoulder. I don't hear him babbling much unless its first thing in the mornings and he is awake in his cot. He has been sick since birth and in and out of hospital. He has been on a low dose antibiotic since 10days old. I'm very worried. He is not rolling over or putting weight on his feet. I have been to the health nurse and he s about to start physio in 2 weeks to help with this. I m going to see a doctor tomorrow as well. I believe he use to be better at eye contact before his 6month needles, but everyone says to me that immunization won't cause these concerns.

Beth - posted on 05/06/2014

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Hi moms, how are your little ones doing now? I am.seeing the same thing with my six month old son. He seems so interested in his environment, theres no time to look at mom. Whats funny, is I feel like he will look longer at new people compared to me, I guess I'm Old news since I'm always here...Thanks for updates!

Andrea - posted on 01/04/2013

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What things did you do to help your baby girl, when she was a baby, to make eye contact with you and become engaged with you? I am having serious concerns with my 6.5 month, 5.5 month adjusted, baby girl. Little eye contact, hard to get her attention, doesn't turn to my voice, more interested in toys.....made eye contact and smiled at toys before me. Was you daughter like this?

Gloria - posted on 11/06/2012

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Hi moms...



Quick update...My son is now 7 months and 3 weeks. Last week was a great week, he started making a lot more eye contact and being a lot more Interactive which gave me a lot of peace.

I really think that sometimes we just worry too much.. But it is never a bad idea to share your concerns with the Pediatrician, and be sure to share exactly how concerned you are.



Please keep me posted on how your babies are doing.

Mrs Nicola - posted on 11/06/2012

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my 7 month old is the same also and I am worried. He can not hold eye contact for long, esp with me (his mum). He would rather focus on my clothing or colours. He smiles more when I am wearing my glasses. He is going to be monitored over the next few months by a paed.

Shae - posted on 11/04/2012

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I know this is a older post but I'm curious how things turned out. This sounds exactly like my 7 month old and I have been worried.

Mary - posted on 11/01/2012

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Hi all! I have a 5 month old and was wondering the same thing :). Gloria, how is your baby doing?

Gloria - posted on 09/20/2012

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Hi Jennifer and Melissa!



Just wanted to followup on how you babies are doing. I have a 6 month and share the same concerns you girls mentioned in the post.

Amber - posted on 04/11/2010

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That sounds normal to me. It sounds like she's just curious and studying her environment. It probably means that she trusts you and is comfortable to let you out of her sight! She is just taking it all in... there's a lot to see in the world! I would keep watching for things that seem "off" and always ask your doctor about things that seem abnormal to you, but I would bet she's just fine!

Jennifer - posted on 02/23/2010

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Melissa, could I add you as a friend to my fb account? I for some reason am not recieving notifications that you have responded through circle of moms?

Melissa - posted on 02/03/2010

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Hi Jennifer, How are things going with your daughter? Is she making more eye-contact? My daughter was evaluated by an early intervention specialist, and she gave me wonderful tips to encourage her to make eye-contact, and I also did some research on specific strategies to encourage eye-contact. I've been doing them for 3 days, and it's like I have a completely different child ! She's the one who gets frustrated when I don't look at her now !! If you would like to know what these strategies are, I would be happy to let you know...just msg me...

Melissa - posted on 01/10/2010

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Argh, I'm still worried, my daughter seems to have her good and bad days. Some days, she doesn't respond as much and it scares me...I'll have to get her checked by a pediatrician...

Jennifer - posted on 01/08/2010

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What worries me is that it's only diagnosed as early as 2, but many parents of autistic toddlers report that even as infants they knew something "just wasn't normal." So how do we know the difference between abnormal/alarming and just over-worrying? The whole autism thing is so intimidating and over-diagnosed. I hate it that "experts" still have no idea what causes it or how to fix it, or even how to diagnose it in infants! I'm a bit worried, but am too busy to freak out about it.

Kelsey - posted on 01/08/2010

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I dont have any facts for you, but my 6 1/2 mo old daughter is like that often. She sometimes completely refuses to make eye contact, and she usually only holds eye contact for a few seconds. Im not worried about it, as long as they are responding to people, smiling and making facial expressions to communicate, are making some voul sounds, and babble, even if its somewhat rare, she is very unlikely to have any issues. If these other things stop developing altogether, or start disappearing, then you can worry. Signs of Autism usually dont develop till much later anyway. Not sure exactly when, but I think it was 2?

Melissa - posted on 01/08/2010

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Quoting Jennifer:

YESSS!!! To make matters worse, I have 7m TWINS, so I am always comparing them, my daughter is exactly like your's! She almost avoids eye contact, but will glance if I try hard enough. Her twin brother, on the other hand, is totally comfortable with eye contact. He seeks out eye contact, always in the mood to be social. But Hannah, she just is not as eager as her brother. She smiles and laughs and babbles a LITTLE, but geeze, her brother already says "dada" and talks constantly! I'm so worried about autism, my father-in-law has it and so do some of his nephews.
Also, I might add that my daughter will make longer eye contact if we are several feet away from each other, but when I'm holding/nursing/giving a bottle, she just refuses.



Oh Wow, Twins ! It's gotta be worse when you can compare like that all the time !!! :-)



I never really noticed before, but I just checked, and my little girl makes more eye contact when i'm far away too ! ;-)

Jennifer - posted on 01/07/2010

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YESSS!!! To make matters worse, I have 7m TWINS, so I am always comparing them, my daughter is exactly like your's! She almost avoids eye contact, but will glance if I try hard enough. Her twin brother, on the other hand, is totally comfortable with eye contact. He seeks out eye contact, always in the mood to be social. But Hannah, she just is not as eager as her brother. She smiles and laughs and babbles a LITTLE, but geeze, her brother already says "dada" and talks constantly! I'm so worried about autism, my father-in-law has it and so do some of his nephews.

Also, I might add that my daughter will make longer eye contact if we are several feet away from each other, but when I'm holding/nursing/giving a bottle, she just refuses.

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