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  • What to say to comments?

    One of my son's vocal tics is a rather loud, noticeable coughing noise. When we're out in public people are constantly looking at him saying, "Oh what a horrible cough!", another person thought he was choking. What do you say to these comments?

  • #2
    Re: What to say to comments?

    What do you say to these comments?
    Depending on the situation and the people involved, the truth, that your son has Tourette Syndrome is probably your best option.

    I suppose if you're walking along the street and someone makes a friendly comment, instead of going into a lengthy explanation, you might just say something like, "Thank you, but it isn't serious" and let it go at that.

    However, in situations like school, among friends or acquaintances,,,people with whom you and/or your son may have future contact, a short prepared truthful explanation is probably best for your son's relationship with others, your peace of mind and the clarity of information for the others.

    You might say something like, "Thank you, you see my son has Tourette Syndrome, which is a neurological disorder, and the sounds or movements he makes are involuntary....like a sneeze or an itch for the rest of us."

    By doing so, you also lay the groundwork for your son, who, as I recall is about five or six, to confidently be able to have the same kind of explanation handy to tell anyone who happens to comment on his tic expressions.

    You would be doing a service for your son, to bolster his self esteem and self confidence about his Tourette and to never feel shy or embarrassed to explain the truthful reason for his expressions.

    What have you been saying until now?
    Steve
    TouretteLinks Forum

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    • #3
      Re: What to say to comments?

      With comments like that, I would probably just let it go and let them think it's what they think. Unless of course your child is in a situation such as a classroom where the truth must be told.

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      • #4
        Re: What to say to comments?

        So far I've normally just said the truth, that it isn't a cough, he has Tourette's Syndrome. And kinda left it at that. That normally creates the big awkward pause.

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        • #5
          Re: What to say to comments?

          Good!..however, as you have noted, many people don't know what to say, or what question to ask, mostly because of all the misinformation generated by the media about Tourette Syndrome.

          That is why it helps to clarify your comment by elaborating and saying "it's a neurological disorder and the movements and sounds are involuntary...like a sneeze or an itch for you and me" (non-Tourette people).

          The above explanation would be said to and by someone who does not happen to be afflicted with Tourette Syndrome.

          I say that because although I wrote the sentence in the first person....I am a Tourette person.
          Steve
          TouretteLinks Forum

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