Here are my notes from the VU/AIS remote Parent Support Session on 11/15/2018. My notes are never as thorough as they could be because I get engaged in listening and forget to take notes!! But here’s my best shot.
Covert and avoidance behaviors: when to intervene and when to let it go. As parents, we only have so much control. Parents observed their children switching words, singing, feigning an accent, etc. and it’s not easy to know when, how, or even if to intervene. While a little of any of these behaviors can actually be helpful and fun, too much of these behaviors can become exhausting and even more disruptive than the stuttering itself. It’s a slippery slope, and at the same time, can make a child feel powerful and confident.
Yoga and meditation – It was agreed that these can be very useful for any child and can be done without it being about the stuttering behavior and at the same time, possibly improve anxiety that can contribute to increased speech tension and avoidance.
Perfectionism – most parents agreed that their children had perfectionist tendencies. We recognize that this tendency can be a double-edged sword. The book, “The Gift of Imperfect Parenting” by Brene Brown was recommended.
It all takes time and patience (and often a leap of faith).
More important than the degree of the stuttering behavior/speech tension, is how the child (and parent) is responding to the behavior. Parents are often overwhelmed and not prepared to provide psychological support that can be helpful to the child and family. This is where enlisting professional help can be very advantageous.
We also talked about the impact and dynamic of having more than one family member who stutters, whether it be a child and a parent or more than one child.
Hope you can join us again next time – possibly in December!