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I Am a Boy Who Can’t Say His Name
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I Am a Boy Who Can’t Say His Name

Please take the time to read this stunningly clear prose about a mother’s experience with her son, who has Apraxia (also known as Verbal Apraxia, or Childhood Apraxia of Speech).

I am a boy who can’t say his name
But that doesn’t mean I can’t be part of your games
I love to play tag, chase, and hide and seek
You can tell me your secrets, I promise to keep.

I am a boy who won’t answer back
But that doesn’t mean understanding I lack
I’m funny and loving and am very like you
So please don’t ignore me, or run away like you do.

You see my brain and my mouth are not in touch quite like yours
While inside I can speak, what you hear is all blurred
So if you hear my words, all jumbled and strange
Look at me and listen, my gestures will amaze
You’ll know what I need and we can still be best friends
Because I am just like you, I don’t need to pretend

So don’t be so quick to make up your mind
Show me some patience, but mostly be kind
Because nobody knows what it’s like to be me
Fear, isolation and anxiety

What I want is so simple, to be just like you
To be able to speak, from my point of view,
To share with you my world, locked inside my head
Full of thoughts and opinions, but so often misread

Because I am as smart and as clever as you
Don’t presume that I can’t, when I can do all you do,
I am a boy, just like you, just the same,
The only real difference? I can’t say my own name.

Thank you, Evelyn Byrne, for helping us understand this speech disorder better. If anyone has concerns about Apraxia or their child’s speech and language, make sure to contact a speech-language pathologist immediately to get an evaluation.

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The author’s views are entirely his or her own and may not necessarily reflect the views of Blub Blub Inc. All content provided on this website is for informational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for independent professional medical judgement, advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.

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