Is there anyone else who’s child has trouble using the phone or talking on it?Also is there any suggestions on dental visits. Right now my 19 son has to be put to sleep just to get his teeth cleaned. I would must rather get it done the regular way since the anasthetic makes him sick. He is just too big now to deal with any other way. Any suggestions are welcome. Thanks.

My son just listens when someone is talking on the phone to him. He won’t talk back. Unless he’s talking to me, then he will. But when he has his toy phone, he’s making calls right and left! And about the dentist thing, he has only been twice, and he’s 6. The first time he freaked. The second time, he did a lot better. I told him they were going to clean his teeth with a toothbrush like mine (I use an electric) and that seemed to help.

My son is eighteen w/fragile x, he’s never had much interest in using the phone, till recently. Out of the blue he took our phone list off the fridge and started calling family, Last week I did buy him a cell phone and programmed in numbers of people he is allowed to call. At first he was constantly wanting to use the phone, now he has calmed down a bit and is being pretty responsible. I feel relieved having him have the phone since he is eighteen he uses the standard line " i’m old enough to do what I want"(not) It does allow him a little more freedom( I feel better when he wants to walk to the corner with out me) time will tell if getting him his own phone wasd a good idea. Also I work at a general dentist office, I still take my son to a pediatric dental office and usually before routine procedures such as cleaning and xrays he takes a 5mg valium which seems to take the edge off and the visit is fine. BJG

Poor eye contact in Fragile X has to do with anxiety. I read in papers from the last Fragile X conference that pushing eye contact could hinder speech due to this and that it may be better to teach child and those around that fleeting eye contact may be better for there development. My son’s eye contact improved dramatically when we treated his anxiety with Prozac.

Mary Peterson-Suri MD

----- Original Message ----
From: annaj
Sent: Monday, April 14, 2008 12:13:19 AM
Subject: Re: [fragilex] telephones


Our daughter who will be 13 next month is OK on the phone for the most part. We need to remind her to speak clearly and with an appropriate voice(not immature/baby voice) She is allowed to talk to friends we’ve meet from school on the phone and family, but she needs to be in a common area of the house. She can get very silly, childish, and inappropriate if she is unsupervised. Some of this is that the friends she talks to on the phone also tend to have special needs. Overall, she loves to talk on the phone and carry on lots of ‘girl talk’; boys, friends, school etc… She’ll also tend to talk as a younger child might, assuming the other person can see through the phone and tries to ‘show’ them things… She has some issues regarding conversation as it is; eye contact, appropriate topics of conversation, relevant questions, turn taking etc… The phone is actually less threatening because the anxiety of having to look at someone is removed.

Thank you very very much for all the info on the telephone thing and all.
My son does the same thing of talking like the person is in the room showing them things and such. He is going to speech therapy to learn how to communicate better and making eye contact. So please keep the info coming, I always said the best information comes from parents. So thank you.

Another tip for the eye contact dilemma is to suggest to your child to look at somewhere else on the person like their shoulder, hair, collar, mouth etc so the child is still looking in the general direction, but not directly in the other’s eyes. Our soon to be 13 year old daughter has always had issues regarding this. It’s gotten a little better, but she will look completely at another person(usually me) when talking to someone. I have to remind her to look at the person she’s really talking to. She LOVES to talk and can get carried away, but as much as she loves to talk, it’s still hard for her to be appropriate.

I have a referral to a neurologist to hopefully explore the use of a medicine like many of you have mentioned (Prozac etc) that might help her with this a she heads into junior high next year. sSfar she has been on a generic dexadrine for her ADHD symptoms. that has helped academically, not socially at all.