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Old 07-18-2012, 12:49 PM   #1
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Late talker and it's my fault?

So my dh was doing some "research" about milestones and one of the things that came up was how many words toddlers should be saying. "By 18 months, you can expect him to be able to say up to 20 words"
Well dd is nearly there, on the 30th shell be 18mos and she doesnt say nearly that many words.
She doesnt even say "no!" She says "nana" (nursing word), mama, dada, and that's pretty much it really.
Dh commented that I need to be talking to her more.
Maybe that's true, I dont talk "outloud" a lot, I am trying but it's just not my nature, I stay in my head a lot.

She seems to understand a lot more than she can actually say though.

My ds was the same way as a toddler, it took him a long time before he really started talking, his speech now is fine.
However he was dx'ed w/adhd, failed kinder, has had general troubles learning/retaining info since preschool. He's been improving since starting on meds this past winter/spring
I stayed at home with him as well.
He had me, my mom, and my dad in his life on a constant basis as a baby/toddler.

DD has me, ds, dh, and my dad on a pretty regular basis.
I was hoping her speech wouldnt be delayed, but if it is me, it makes sense.

We had ds tested by a city funded program, and while he had some troubles, not enough to qualify for any special programs.

I dont plan on putting her in any kind of preschool till age two and even then, only if she is ready to be apart from momma and only a few days a week for maybe two or three hours max. Right now she is NOT ready to be away from momma and Im not ready either. lol

Common sense to me says if she understands lots of words (well probably at least 20) but cant/wont say them, says she knows them she just is able to say them says it's not my fault, it's just the way she is. Or am I off base?

I am not sure what I am looking for exactly.
I am not sure what to do.

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Old 07-18-2012, 12:59 PM   #2
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Re: Late talker and it's my fault?

Well receptive language (what they understand) is very different than expressive language (what they say). She probably understands a lot more than 20 words. If you tell her to get a toy out of her room (if she's so inclined) she probably understands and does it.

Expressive language is harder, and kids really do need to be spoken to a lot in order to pick it up. It seems silly to say things like "look at the tree, do you see the tree, that's a nice green tree" etc when you're out for a walk, but it does help you kid learn. However, she has 4 words before 18 months so, while she might be a bit later on the expressive language, she's not super far behind.

Also, if it makes you feel better, my 20 month old has a pretty severe speech delay and I have talked that kid's ear off since birth. My older DS is on the very advanced end for speech. It's important not to blame yourself and to just remember that all kid develop differently. I bet she'll be talking your ear off in no time
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Old 07-18-2012, 01:08 PM   #3
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Re: Late talker and it's my fault?

It's just my thoughts that it's not your fault. Kids talk when they talk. That said... If you are at all concerned, and even if you aren't you should call early intervention. It's free, and they will have someone come out to you to do an evaluation and possible therapy.

I waited too long, and my son (at 9) still struggles with his speech. His pediatrician blew us off, and I should have listened to my gut. He has apraxia, something that could not be fixed on its own... And every day I waited was a day wasted. My daughter also has apraxia, just milder than my son.
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Old 07-18-2012, 01:14 PM   #4
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Re: Late talker and it's my fault?

At two we were told to get evaluated. My kid is a late talker. Like people keep telling me here and elsewhere, some kids are just like that and they just start talking. Mine is just starting to talk now (and in all honesty, its a pain as he's asking to go outside at 10 PM at night - hee hee). I'd stay on top of it and be concerned but wait till a bit later to hit the panic button. Its not your fault at all and kids do things in their own time. I'm sure she has her strengths and interests and she just focuses on those things. We've done speech therapy and I dropped it as they weren't doing anything more than I did and they would only see him 30 minutes a week even though we have been approved for more. My concern is at three and we are putting him in a speech preschool at our University to make sure he catches up. If you think its a special need issue or will be a long term concern, like PP said, then absolutely push for help now but you still have some time. By 2, I'd be concerned, by 3 if there is no progress, then panic.
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Old 07-18-2012, 01:27 PM   #5
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Dd is 22mo and is delayed in her expressive language. She only says dada and uhoh and will arff arff.

However she is a bright cookie! She can hear and understand very well. Even better than her bug brother or dad

Our ped said that we will evaluate her at 24mo if it doesn't increase.

And we talk talk talk to her constantly.

I keep getting reminded that Einstein didn't talk until 3.

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Old 07-18-2012, 01:28 PM   #6
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I wouldnt worry just yet. She needs to be talked too(reading is awesome, even if she wont sit still she'll still hear you and you wont feel as silly talking outloud-at least that was the case for me lol). Also encourage her to talk. If she just points and/or grunts and gets exactly what she wants then she doesnt have a reason to talk kwim?
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Old 07-18-2012, 01:42 PM   #7
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Re: Late talker and it's my fault?

I wouldn't be overly worried. And I wouldn't blame yourself.

DD was a late talker. She just learned 'no' at 21months. Of course, I try not to say 'no' very often. She really took off after 18months, which is when they're supposed to. She still doesn't do 2word sentences really or anything, but she is using more words. Not mama, mind you.. she refuses to say anything that designates me.

I used to worry that it was my fault. It made a ton of sense. DH deployed when she was 8 weeks old and I pretty much had no one to talk to. I'd try to say everything out loud, but I forgot a lot. I have a pretty constant internal conversation with myself and actually speaking doesn't happen as often as some people.

I would notice when she was a little baby that she would babble a lot more on days when we went to playgroups, so I decided that it was me. She was quiet because her mom was quiet, but when she heard all the talking at groups, she would get more talkative.

Friends told me that I just had to try harder to speak out loud. And I do.

The real issue that they have where children start looking like they need early intervention is when they don't really communicate in other ways, either. Like not pointing. They should be pointing around a year. DD was not doing anything other than screaming when she wanted something and this was concerning. She ended up qualifying at 14months, but by the time the sessions started a month or so later, they thought she had caught up and that her delay was due to her being focused on other skills (most notably gross motor, in which she is advanced). They've kept her in the program anyways because it's easier to stay in than to get back in and we're waiting to see what happens when she turns 2. So, I really wouldn't worry at 18months, I'd just wait until 2. There is SO much that will happen in those 6 months. And if it doesn't happen, then you know there might be something to work on.

It's easy to blame ourselves. I don't inherently think it's our fault, but we do have to make a bigger effort than some people in saying things out loud.
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Old 07-18-2012, 01:49 PM   #8
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The whole timeline is a guide but by no means the rule. My oldest, 14, didn't talk much until after 2 and she understood enough. She has always done well in school amd aces her courses. My son 7, didn't say much until 3 and were lucky if he takes a breath while talking! Now my youngest is a chatter box at 20 months..go figure! Anyhow, don't get too caught up with the guidelines unless YOU think there is cause for concern.
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Old 07-18-2012, 04:54 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wonton
So my dh was doing some "research" about milestones and one of the things that came up was how many words toddlers should be saying. "By 18 months, you can expect him to be able to say up to 20 words".

Common sense to me says if she understands lots of words (well probably at least 20) but cant/wont say them, says she knows them she just is able to say them says it's not my fault, it's just the way she is. Or am I off base?

I am not sure what I am looking for exactly.
I am not sure what to do.
First of all, key words here 'up to'. As low as 5 is considered average, it's pretty variable. Secondly, comprehension doesn't exclude a language delay, though it makes for a better prognosis. There are children who understand (receptive language ) but can't talk, either due to expressive language or speech issues. With a family history of learning problems (big brother), I would personally get her tested. These things tend to run generally in families (daddy had a speech delay, daughter has a learning disability, or brother has a learning disability, sister has language delay, ect).

Personally I would get her tested. Prior to age 5 provides the most gains in therapy, better safe than sorry IMO
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Old 07-18-2012, 05:25 PM   #10
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Re: Late talker and it's my fault?

Quote:
Originally Posted by wonton View Post
So my dh was doing some "research" about milestones and one of the things that came up was how many words toddlers should be saying. "By 18 months, you can expect him to be able to say up to 20 words"
Well dd is nearly there, on the 30th shell be 18mos and she doesnt say nearly that many words.
She doesnt even say "no!" She says "nana" (nursing word), mama, dada, and that's pretty much it really.
Dh commented that I need to be talking to her more.
Maybe that's true, I dont talk "outloud" a lot, I am trying but it's just not my nature, I stay in my head a lot.

She seems to understand a lot more than she can actually say though.

My ds was the same way as a toddler, it took him a long time before he really started talking, his speech now is fine.
However he was dx'ed w/adhd, failed kinder, has had general troubles learning/retaining info since preschool. He's been improving since starting on meds this past winter/spring
I stayed at home with him as well.
He had me, my mom, and my dad in his life on a constant basis as a baby/toddler.

DD has me, ds, dh, and my dad on a pretty regular basis.
I was hoping her speech wouldnt be delayed, but if it is me, it makes sense.

We had ds tested by a city funded program, and while he had some troubles, not enough to qualify for any special programs.

I dont plan on putting her in any kind of preschool till age two and even then, only if she is ready to be apart from momma and only a few days a week for maybe two or three hours max. Right now she is NOT ready to be away from momma and Im not ready either. lol

Common sense to me says if she understands lots of words (well probably at least 20) but cant/wont say them, says she knows them she just is able to say them says it's not my fault, it's just the way she is. Or am I off base?

I am not sure what I am looking for exactly.
I am not sure what to do.
Quote:
Originally Posted by my2sweets View Post
I wouldnt worry just yet. She needs to be talked too(reading is awesome, even if she wont sit still she'll still hear you and you wont feel as silly talking outloud-at least that was the case for me lol). Also encourage her to talk. If she just points and/or grunts and gets exactly what she wants then she doesnt have a reason to talk kwim?
Quote:
Originally Posted by mibarra View Post
First of all, key words here 'up to'. As low as 5 is considered average, it's pretty variable. Secondly, comprehension doesn't exclude a language delay, though it makes for a better prognosis. There are children who understand (receptive language ) but can't talk, either due to expressive language or speech issues. With a family history of learning problems (big brother), I would personally get her tested. These things tend to run generally in families (daddy had a speech delay, daughter has a learning disability, or brother has a learning disability, sister has language delay, ect).

Personally I would get her tested. Prior to age 5 provides the most gains in therapy, better safe than sorry IMO
Yes to all the above.

Try to encourage her to talk more - books are wonderful! Either reading, as mentioned above, or talking about the books - "What is that doggie doing?" "Look - do you see the cow?" - that sort of thing.

But I wouldn't worry. My DS barely had 20 words at two, and I talked and read to/with him all the time. Then one day when he was about 27 months old (just after we moved to Germany), he just started talking practically out of the blue. A year later, he was fluently speaking both English and German.

If she's still not talking as much as you think she should, mention it to her doctor at her next check-up. Otherwise, try not to worry.
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