21 answers

3 Year Old Not Having Conversations

I took my daugther to her 3 year check up and the doctor said we should see a speech therapist because she is not really holding conversations. At the same time the doctor did not seem overly concerned. My daughter usually repeats what we are saying rather than keeping the conversation going. Sometimes she responds but not a lot. I have noticed some other children her age being able to hold a conversation. Does anyone else have experience with this? Is this normal?

What can I do next?

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I think that the child is not ready to talk yet. People in general are so worried about this type of thing but to be honest, I think it's typical. The child will talk when ready and since the child repeats what she hears then we know it's not that she can't communticate it's just that she's not ready and when she is you will never hear the end of a conversation with her. I wouldn't get upset or anything just let time take it's time.

Hi J., I have three girls and each one of them started talking differently. My oldest was textbook, my middle one was talking by the time she was 9 months (her nick name was motor mouth) and my youngest was Miss Silent. She barely said more than Mama, Dada until she was over the age of three. Her hearing was tested(perfact), her speech was tested twice before she started school(boarderline) and yet again once school started(at level). She could follow multi-step directions, and could make her needs/wants known without saying a word. it was amazing how eliquent she was in her silence. When she did start talking it was like going from 0 to 120 mph! Complete sentences with difficult words I didn't even know she knew...and her nick name quickly became marathon mouth! Sometimes I think she was just waiting til she could say everything she wanted perfactly, sometimes I think she didn't need to talk with two older sisters, and sometimes I just wonder! Best wishes.

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Hi J.,

Take your child to a speech therapist. The therapist will be able to explain what you need to know about what is causing your concerns.

Good luck. All the best. D.

1 mom found this helpful

i had that problem when i was a baby. mom said at 3 i wasnt talking hardly at all if any. i went to a speech therapist, as did my older brother at the same time. the dr thought i was just immitating my older brother. mom didnt really see it that way... though i was slow at starting conversations, dont worry... i'm 22 and no one can shut me up. everyone says i talk a lot and fast when i'm comfortable around the people (is that good or bad? lol)

it happens, take her to a speech therapist for an evaluation and maybe some sessions... but dont worry :)

Hi J.,

I'm the mom of twin boys. When they were 3 years old, they were not talking in full sentences or holding any real conversations. I was starting to get a little concerned until someone said to me that, when his twin brothers were 3, they weren't talking, and now one guy is a doctor, the other became a lawyer. My own sons, who are now 17 years old, are very bright and getting straight A's in school. (well, not all the time, but mostly) Don't panic yet, make sure she can understand what is being said to her. If she stops talking or makes a backward regression in her speech, then I would have that looked at. Good luck!

I believe that it never hurts to have your child checked by an independant source. My 4yo has been in speech since the beginning of September. I didn't really notice a problem, but between her teacher at preschool and her doctor they said to have her evaluated. I was so used to her speech patterns, and in fact loved some of her words ( "I'm await Mommy" (awake) ), that I didn't realize there was a delay.

Get the evaluation and have peace of mind whatever the outcome.

call your school and get her tested asap. takes few months to get evaluated.

check your insurance see if speech is covered. most don't but if you get iep then you get medical access for her and that pays for private speech.

My son started out this way as well, he is now talking just fine. On the other hand though, if your insurance will cover it, I would go just to have all worries put to rest.

I have 4 daughters...it is hard to give advice though because i know every family is different. They all were having conversations at 3, sometimes to the point that mommy would want to say...shhh :-)

I have heard that repeating and not conversating is a sign that your daughter may need extra help. Is there any way you can work with her. (like making her ask for a glass of milk before you give it to her) I am not talking in a mean way...lord knows one mom on here will jump on me and tell you that i meant scold!!

You are absolutely on the right track in looking for help. Does she go to preschool? Have they noticed a difference between her and other children?

dont feel too discouraged.my 4yr old will rammer away at home with relatives and in preschool she doesnt interact with peers or teachers.
She is being evaled by IU13,But the teacher believes its selective mutism(which we dont think) or verey shy(we think this) her dad was like this as a child.
Have her evaluated by a specialist and go from there.Catch a problem now can really help for when shes older:-)

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