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Talking With A Slow Child


Registered Member
When approached by, or when one happen to run into one, a child who is "slow" as they say, having somewhat of a speech problem, maybe a little retardation- and they try and talk to you, and you can not understand a word they are saying, how do you handle the situation??
Do you keep trying to listen, hopefully make heads or tails out of a word you might recognize??
Do you look up at the child's parents or teacher...hoping they will help you out??
Or do you just skirt over the issue and say whatever you feel will satisfy the child??
Because a lot of children, even tho their speech is not very well, they do have communication skills and they know what they're trying to say to you, and they are waiting to hear something back from you, that will answer their question.
If you have never been confronted in such a situation, then you may not be able to answer, but if you have, how did you handle it??
And someday, those of you who haven't had this situation take place in your life, it might, and how would you react??


/ˈɪzəˌbɛl/ pink 5
I haven't had a conversation with a child with disability. But I assume that I would behave the same way as when my children talk to me from a young age and I don't understand what they're saying. I listen, I ask (hopefully recognise nonverbal communication of nodding for example to suggest agreement or confirmation), I repeat, and I don't hesitate to ask for "translation" from someone who could understand better. In the scenario's case, I'd ask the parents. In my children's case, I ask the older siblings who can interpret child talk to me that they seemed to have developed together secretly while playing together in another room. :)


Sally Twit
I grew up with a girl a few years younger than me that has always had learning difficulties. Even now she talks very slow and she has been bullied her entire life. It's really hard for her but she takes it in her stride. Some people can be cruel and they have no patience.
If you actually gave people with learning difficulties the time of day you'd find out that they are wonderful people and have dreams just like you and me. I don't see why people have to act like jerks when they meet someone different.


Registered Member
A lot of it depends on the situation. Generally I'll try to understand what they're saying, and I'll often look to someone else for clarification. But once in a while I'm in a hurry, and if I can't figure it out quickly I'll just say something that hopefully makes them happy.
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