When my daughter was 3 years old she started speech therapy. By that point, I’d been concerned about her speech and language development for a better part of a year. She wasn’t speaking as much as her peers, her language wasn’t coming in the bursts that I’d seen my friends’ kids exhibit and down deep inside I knew that she needed help.
What I didn’t realize is how difficult it would be to get other members of my family on board. Some thought that if she lagged behind a bit then she would eventually catch up, with or without intervention, a possibility that the experts we consulted with couldn’t exclude. Others suggested that I was seriously over-reacting, holding my first child to an impossible standard of development that didn’t allow for a time lag.
Eventually I listened to what was in my heart and we started speech therapy with our daughter. I have no doubt that it was indeed the correct choice for her, and she’d made strides within months. (She is now 14 years old and very, very chatty. VERY.)
But I never forgot the comments that some people made when they learned that my daughter was in speech therapy. While many people were supportive, others said things that were hurtful, even when they were coming from a good place of wanting to be helpful and sympathetic.