Selective Mutism: How Shy Is Too Shy?

When should you worry about your child's shyness? Watch this video from Child Mind Institute.


-Selective mutism is a condition where children talk fine in certain circumstances typically at home and then in other circumstances aren't participating, either completely not talking or really, really so inhibited that it's not comfortable and it's not active enough in participation. And the difficulty with that is that they might need to go to the bathroom and not be able to ask help. They might get on the wrong bus and not be able to tell the bus driver that they got on the wrong bus. We're often get asked, how shy is too shy? And when should you worry about a child? When kids are actually not able to participate in things that you know they want to do, that's too shy. So, a kid who likes drawing but won't do it at a birthday party, a child who likes gymnastics but can't participate in it on the playground at school, the kid who is like a deer in the headlights when surrounded by kids. But, if the kids aren't there, he kind of eases up and relaxes. That's a time to bring your child to somebody and find out what's behind it and probably that's too shy.

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