Facebook Dad: After 3 months of Gemiini ... FIRST WORD!
We have an update from one of our community members, James Pope.
If you remember, he posted a while back this comment on our Facebook page:
“We have two autistic sons 4 and 8. My 8 year old is doing well with verbal but our 4 year old is non-verbal. The system concentrates on pronouncing words and the program repeats the word over and over and allows the child with autism to focus on the mouth not the whole face while pronouncing the word. We have been doing the program now for 4 weeks we have seen progress. Andrew our 4 year old has begun to mimic sounds which he did not do before, he is starting to mimic sound patterns during the session.. Plus our 8 year old now plays along during the sessions.”
We wrote that we really loved this comment because James is an experienced parent who has realistic expectations. His 4 year old has already been in a lot of therapy, with very little results. James knows that this could be a long road, and understands the "good signs" that GemIIni is indeed having an effect: mimicking sounds and patterns.
Today we received the following comment from James:
"Update our son has been doing the program 3 months. Increased mimicking of sounds. Trying to form words and said "Hi" today."
There are comments all over Gemiini's Facebook by parents whose children start to say complete words the very first day, but that is NOT EVERYONE'S EXPERIENCE. Some students just take longer. Sometimes they have a very slow start, but take off after months or even a year. Also, expressive language is not the only barometer of success. Eye-contact, sound imitation, being more "present", watching the mouth of the speaker, increased socialization with peers, receptive language, and many other skills are just as important as the spoken word.
It is extremely common in ABA or other therapies for children to take 6 months or even a year to say their first word, yet parents don’t quit just because the child isn't talking after a few months. James' son had been in therapy for years with no results, so 3 months is lightning speed by comparison. If we all assume that this is going to be a journey, not a sprint, we can set our expectations correctly. If we give up too soon, we will never know what might have been.