My son (2.5 yo) has what is turning out to be quite mild ASD/SPD and after a 6 month circus of assessments and therapy I decided to take on all of his therapy at home (with some occasional input/consultations from professionals) and it has been going really well!
He has made HUGE strides in so many ways and I can't help but feel so much pride in giving him some tools to really blossom.
DS's biggest "symptom" of his ASD is his echolalia. At this point it is mostly delayed, with some immediate. Lately he is just a complete chatterbox - basically when he is awake, he is talking. And most of it is reciting books, songs, interesting things that we have talked about or that he has learned etc. He has made leaps and bounds in communicating using scripts as well as spontaneous language to get our attention, in greetings, to make requests/protests and to express his feelings and talk about some other things. His language comprehension is pretty amazing too, so his echolalia is not the kind that is rooted in misunderstanding at all. I am beyond thrilled that he is so verbal when I meet parents of kids with ASD who have so many more communicative obstacles.
BUT he is kind of driving me crazy ! And I'd like to help him increase his non-echolalic speech even more while decreasing his recitations.
I've read a lot about echolalia and spoken to some professionals about it. It seems that they don't really have that much to say about "treating" it. A lot of them just tell me that I should be happy that DS uses his echolalia communicatively and that his capacity for spontaneous language is slowly growing and developing as time goes on. We do some exercises and speak to DS in ways to encourage spontaneous language while also teaching him appropriate scripts to use.
I guess what I'm wondering, and what I'd like to hear from mamas who have been there with young and extremely verbal echolaliacs, is where does all this end up? What will his speech be like in a few years as we go down this path? I've read about adult Aspies who still rely on some scripts or constantly have recitations running in their heads but can also communicate in a pretty "normal" fashion- has anyone seen this in their children (or themselves)?
Has anyone (or their speech therapist) done anything with their LO that really helped with echolalia?
Really, I'd just like to hear about your experiences dealing with this often hilarious, frequently adorable, and sometimes completely irritating behaviour that goes along with ASD!
Thanks as always!