talking in the third person...

Anna - posted on 02/01/2013 ( 1 mom has responded )

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my daughter, 3yrs 4mnths, always talks in the third person. she will say things like "daniella doesnt want to" or "daniella is hungry". she knows the meaning of 'I' because she will say "i am daniella" to introduce herself. i dont see it as such a big problem, but other people think its a bit weird (including playschool teachers). i have told her that she can also say "i dont want to" and "i am hungry", but it doesnt seem to have sunk in.
she is 'behind' with her speech and not in therapy, so im pretty impressed with recent improvements.
do you think this is something to work on? or will it phase out on its own...

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Jodi - posted on 02/01/2013

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Actually, her ability to say "I" when she says "I am Daniella" has nothing to do with her ability or understanding of the context in which to use the word "I". It isn't indicative at all that she understands. What she is doing is a perfectly normal developmental stage. After all, you call her Daniella, everyone else calls her Daniella, why can't she call herself Daniella! It makes perfect sense to her.

At this age, parents also have a tendency to say "Mummy would like you to do this", rather than "I would like you to do this". if you want her to change how she refers to herself, you need to ensure you are consistent about how you refer to yourself.

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