Child talks to herself????

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Christal22, Dec 11, 2007.

  1. Christal22

    Christal22 New Member

    I have a 10 year old step daughter that talks to herself outloud. She does this all of the time and when we point it out she doesn't even know she is doing it.
    When she is in the bathroom you'd think someone is in there with her. Is this normal?

    I've noticed other things that have me worried that she may suffer from depression. She has friends at school but has no interest in talking to them after school. She never calls them or ask if she can have anyone over. Most days she hangs out with the family and is happy. She is willing to help and seems fine.
    Other days she is withdrawn. She will go to her room and stay in there alone. She will snap at her siblings and generally has the attitude of "I don't care".

    I understand that this comes with getting your period and hormones but is it normal to be this withdrawn from friends and the outside world? Any suggestions would be great!
  2. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

    This sounds normal to me. If she has friends at school and is comfortable at home, I don't see anything out of the ordinary that you should worry about. All of what you are mentioning seems real typical for a typical kid.

    I had a niece who could only poo if she was singing. I find myself saying something out loud to myself (repeating a point I made in earlier conversation, imagining a conversation that I would like to have, etc.) three or four times a day.

    Since she's doing well at school, has friends, helps around the house, hangs around the family and is happy, I'd leave it be. Snapping at siblings and having an attitude of "I don't care" seems pretty normal as well for a ten year old.
  3. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    I also don't see anything unusual about it. Many people "think" outloud. I'm one of them. For some reason it helps me to hear what I'm trying to work through outloud rather than just think it in my head. This can be anything from random thoughts to conversations I might be mulling over.

    Her moodiness is probably just the wonderful beginnings of puberty.

  4. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    I've said before, I have very little frame of reference for what is 'normal'. difficult child 3 talks to himself all the time. Last night when difficult child 1 was watching a TV documentary on eagles, I was concerned when I heard difficult child 3 talking; I thought he was bothering his brother (it took a lot of effort to drag difficult child 1 away from his computer games to watch the documentary).
    Turned out, difficult child 3 was in his bedroom alone.

    He does this a lot, especially when his medications have worn off in the evenings. But even during the day, he will share virtually every thought in his head. When he is quiet, then I know he is really focussed on something (and I hope it is his schoolwork).

    Not socialising - that would worry me. Again, difficult child 3 doesn't socialise normally. His best friends are all younger than him, about two thirds his age. Most are also very bright. One big exception - I found out last night that difficult child 3's friend from Drama class is 17. Because of his developmental delay, friend seems to be about 10 years old. They only relate together on computer game level; they play games together, difficult child 3 helps train his friend how to play better.

    husband often talks out loud, usually a low mumble. But then he talks to me, also at a mumble, it's sometimes hard to tell when he's just thinking aloud or when he's asking me a question! It's worse when he's tired or distracted; but then, we have been wondering for some time about husband's status as a possible Aspie.

    Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) doesn't just run in our family; it gallops!

  5. slsh

    slsh member since 1999

    Hi Christal,

    Gosh... my perception may be off but to me, your daughter's behavior sounds in the realm of normal. My 9 y/o girl talks constantly - audience not required. If she's not talking, she's singing. If she's mad or feels slighted, she *really* talks to herself. :wink:

    And my 12 y/o son never ever calls anyone. He gets lots of calls, but never initiates, even when I gently prompt. He's just happy in his little world most of the time. He is prone to depression every once in a while but we let him ride it out, watching carefully and trying to at least keep the lines of communication if he chooses. He usually doesn't.

    on the other hand - you know her best. It is really hard when you have a difficult child in the house, not to see a whole houseful of difficult children but I think sometimes it's *also* hard to keep your balance and know for sure when there might be a problem brewing with a easy child. When in doubt, follow your gut feeling.
  6. busywend

    busywend Well-Known Member

    Well, hormones are coming into play at this age.

    The fact that she does not realize she is talking to herself would worry me a bit. Are you sure it is not a make believe friend?

    The social aspect concerns me because she does not initiate the socialization at all. I know this worry because my difficult child is the same way. I would suggest and she just does not get that whole process of calling, inviting, planning, etc. To this day I can not get that entire process to work smoothly.

    For example, she may ask to go to the movies. I will ask the usual: with who, what are you seeing, do you have money, how are you getting there and getting home, etc? She has none of these answers for me. It is like pulling teeth to get them all answered. It is not her trying to hide anything, it is her just not getting it.
  7. flutterbee

    flutterbee Guest

    I talk to myself all the time and often don't realize I'm doing it. I'll be in the car and will say something out loud and difficult child will ask me what I'm talking about. Or - worse - I'll be alone in public and realize I've been talking to myself only after I've already been doing it. :bag:

    Some kids just aren't social butterflies. She may be very happy seeing her friends at school and spending her evenings with the family. Snapping at siblings and moodiness is pretty normal for the age. It'll get worse before it gets better.

    If you have concerns, talk to her and let her know that you are there if she needs to talk or wants to share things. See how she responds. If she totally shuts down, I would probably ask for an outside opinion - gently, though, without setting off any alarms. Keeping the lines of communication open - and making sure she's aware of that and feels safe to come to you - is the most important thing at this age.

    I thought this was normal. LOL This is easy child to a T. He *knows* he's doing something, but trying to get details is like pulling teeth, like you said. And since it usually involves me running him around and/or picking up friends it's soooo annoying cause I don't know what I'm doing til the last second. I just chalked it up to kids not planning ahead.
  8. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I disagree that it sounds normal. The only child I have who talks to himself, and he does it nonstop and only in his room, is on the autism spectrum and he says he talks out loud because "I understand better." I would rush her to a neuropsychologist for an evaluation and also take her to a psychiatrist. in my opinion (mom of five kids, not a doctor) this is more than just hormones. She sounds really moody and upset. Are there any mood disorders or substance abuse on either side of the family tree? Other psychiatric problems? Neurological problems, like autism? The teen years often bring out latent mental illness--I know that happened with me--and I really needed help, but my mom didn't understand that and there wasn't much help back then anyways. I remember I didn't want to see my friends anymore because I was too depressed to enjoy anything so I stopped doing anything and I cried a lot.
    I would not mess with a therapist--I'd go to the big guns, as I've said, a neuropsychologist or a Psychiatrist (with that good ole MD). My long experience with mental health care professionals is that these are the most helpful professionals and I put NeuroPsychs even ahead of Psychiatrists because they do lots of testing. Good luck (and JMO).
  9. I'm going crazy!!!

    I'm going crazy!!! New Member

    I can't give you much advice. My difficult child talks to himself constantly and anyone who will listen. I never tried to contact people when I was a teenager. I was very content to see them at school and then spend my time at home with my family or alone, mostly alone in my room. I had been around people all day I just wanted some me time. I still talk to myself, even in public. If you're concerned about it ask the pediatrician or if you have a professional for your difficult child then ask them what their opinion is. I personally would rather ask and know for sure than have something blow up in my face later. Not to scare you but it turned out that I was depressed and had been sexually molested until I was 11 years old and these things didn't come to light until I was 19 y/o and tried to commit suicide. I would definitely get to the bottom of it and if it's just her way of coping with her teenage life then let it go. Hope this helped. love ya
  10. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    What exactly is she talking about?
  11. Christal22

    Christal22 New Member

    Thank you so much for everyone's input....

    To answer questions and give more detail, this child is my step daughter. Her mother is bi-polar and has several attempts with sucide so her father has primary custody.

    She often breaks down (but only to me) about her mother. Her mom will not return her phone calls and when my daughter visits her mother (who moved across the US 6 months ago, however this all started about 2 years ago) her mom pretty much ignores her. My daughter has said that she feels abandoned by her mom and her mom does not love her.
    She says that I care more about her than her real mom and she has no clue how to deal with that. It breaks my heart...

    I'm sure the issues with her mom play a great part in her socializing. My guess would be that she is scared of rejection and if she doesnt make an attempt to make friends than she won't have to worry about losing them. Just a guess.

    She talks to herself about everything just about. One morning she put on an outfit she KNOWS i don't care for. She didn't not know that i was in the other room and could hear her. She was talking outloud and I could hear her say "I'm going to wear this and see if this makes (stepmom) mad". She was not trying to make me mad but wanted to see if she could get a rise out of me for fun. I of course did not play into it. I just told her she looked great.

    A lot of times she accidently says what she is thinking outloud (things she probably should of kept to herself) and then doesn't realize it.
    She also has other little quirks like when she gets excited about something she sniffs her hands. I don't ever think I've seen anything like this before.

    She very different than my own children and I want to be able to understand her better. Thanks to all.
  12. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Thanks for the info.
    Actually, talking about what to wear to get a rise out of you is pretty funny. (Sorry, but it sounded cute the way you wrote it. And you handled it very well.)
    I SO understand how she feels about her mother. If she isn't already seeing a therapist, I would take her to one who can explain to her that her mother is very sick. You can tell her a million times over but unless she hears it from an authority figure, it probably won't sink in.
    It's possible that her mother does love her but doesn't know how. And it's "okay" to be hurt because those feelings are necessary and valid. The therapist may also be able to come up with-little scenarios to help her mingle with-friends, and deal with-small rejections, and do role playing. For ex., if she's wearing a pink hair ribbon and someone laughs because they like green, she has to learn that it's just a matter of taste, and that the person isn't necessarily rejecting her, totally.
    Best of luck.
  13. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Sniffing her hand is a sensory thing--again could be Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). I'd seriously want her evaluated. She could have Aspergers. The fact her mother is bipolar would give her a bigger genetic predisposition to both bipolar and Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). I'm sure she's upset about her mother (who would't be?) but I think, beyond that, something is evolving--some disorder--and I'd want to find out what it is.
  14. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Hmm, I missed the part about sniffing her hands when she gets excited. That IS different.

    So sorry about your back issues. I just noticed that in your bio.
  15. Christal22

    Christal22 New Member

    I haven't quite caught on to the lingo, can someone tell me what Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) stands for?
  16. flutterbee

    flutterbee Guest

    Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) = Autism Spectrum Disorder