Monday: 02.April.2007

The Bug is Stuttering

The bug has begun stuttering. As you might imagine, this is most distressing, especially since his impressive language skills have represented the most common comments I've received from others (who know more about kids than I do).

He doesn't do it all the time, but when he does, it seems severe. I mean, he will repeat a syllable 5 or 6 times, unable to get it for 9 or 10 seconds.

I first noticed it a couple of weeks ago. After researching the topic, where it said stuttering could be caused by emotional trauma, I called his mom to ask if he had any traumatic experiences the last 4 or 5 days (since I'd seen him last).

She said not to worry .. that stuttering in kids was normal. But last week, she agreed his stuttering was severe enough to be a concern.

today's entry continues here

He just turned two a couple of months ago, and like I said, the most common comment I get from others (after how dang cute he is, of course) is how developed his language skills seem. He talks good for a two-year old. I've even taught him ~50 spanish words (e.g. big=grande, thank-you=gracias, water=agua, horse=...).

The articles I read advise the parent not to do anything to call attention to the stuttering, as that only makes things worse. I merely try to ensure he gets plenty of rest, exercise (play), time in nature and good nutrition .. along with lots of attention & affection, and make sure he knows he's loved.

Genetics are singled out as a (potential) factor, but no one in my family has ever stuttered. (Some family members might talk too much, but .. that's another story.)

My climbing buddy Tom ("Uncle Tom"), says the bug may be getting to the age where he's becoming more aware of his environment, and he may be beginning to realize that things are different between him and kids in other families, where the parents live together.

He lives in two different worlds (mine & his mom's). I wonder if that could be having any affect. Except for the first few months of his life, that's all he's ever known. People say, if you're going to split up, it's best to do it when they're young. That way they don't feel like it's their fault.

I'm trying my best to normalize relations with his mom. Unfortuntely, it's not going well .. despite the fact that it has been nearly two years since the break-up. (Time to move on.)

It's not always nasty, but more nasty than nice (especially the last few months). She wants him more of the time. I already donate some of my time with him to her (like this Saturday, for example, when I donated the whole day, 24 hours). But I'm unwilling to give more. She also wants more money.

Whatever I do is never enough. She's never satisfied. Everything is my fault. If he doesn't sleep enough, or sleeps too much, it'smy fault. Whether he falls asleep too early, or stays up too late .. it's still my fault.

She can't stop focusing on negatives from the past (ignores the positive things I do), complains, criticizes, and keeps talking about moving away with him (threatens). Definitely not trying to make it easy on me (e.g. still nursing).

I wonder if the bug might be sensing the tension between us. You know, kids are sensitive to those things. I keep trying to normalize, be civil, but it's not easy when you're repeatedly attacked.

People who know me, and who've seen me with the bug, have said (on numerous occasions) I'm the best dad they've ever seen.

My hope is .. someday .. we might get along well enough to take the bug camping .. up in the mountains of Yosemite .. to a campsite like this (Yosemite Creek). The outdoors is so healthy for kids (grown-ups, too). We're pretty far from that point, however.

For more along these lines, here's a Google search pre-configured for the query > stuttering children





Posted by Rad at April 2, 2007 07:46 AM

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