Impulsivity vs. Social Inhibition: “I’m too Scared to Speak” vs. “I Couldn’t Help Myself”
Many children with social problems experience diffi culties with pragmatic language. Th ey fi nd themselves verbally at sea, not knowing what to say to other children, and struggling with the basics of conversational discourse. Children with problems in the use of pragmatic language oft en don’t get past the very basics of communication. Verbal dysfunction precludes the development of intimacy in relationships. Th e conversation of such youngsters tends to be sparse and superfi cial because they have not developed the capacity to verbally express a higher-level discussion of thoughts or feelings. In addition, a child may have memory defi cits that cause him to forget what he wanted to say, or he may have poor gestural communication and fail to make good eye contact, or provide relevant facial or gestural feedback to others. Other children may perceive them as aloof or disinterested.