some of ya’ll know that pam, my wife, is a speech pathologist. this means she has the incredible job of helping children and adults learn and sometimes re-learn how to communicate with the world around them. she does some fascinating stuff. awhile back she was telling me how certain individuals with various communication problems are able to communicate better with animals or puppets (for those who stutter or love someone who stutters you can relate this to the way so many people who stutter have a much more difficult time talking on the phone than they do talking in a one sided conversation face to face). the biggest problems they face are with talking with humans. because of this some therapist have started using animals and puppets with very young individuals to get them focused on learning to communicate. pam read about therapists who did their therapy through puppets and the children would communicate with the puppet and basically forget that what was going on was actually therapy – i know this sounds a little odd but if it helps a child to be able to talk and interact with his/her world then i am all for it.
being the great speech pathologist that she is pam decided to give this whole thing a try. she order a puppet and had two children picked for a trial run with the whole thing. the first test of the therapy was today and it met with less than stellar results. when pam started talking through the puppet it did not help her two subjects to communicatebetter. they did not find it easier to talk with the puppet than with pam. no! the puppets simply scared the crud out of both of her test subjects. instead of opening up to the world around them each child stared wide-eyed, slowly backed away form the puppet, and then hide in the corner of the room whimpering about the crazed little person that was coming after them. so much for puppet therapy. now these two poor kids have to go through psychotherapy to chase away the nightmares of the killer puppets within their speech therapy. chalk one up for modern science.
okay, here’s my disclaimer. pam is amazing at what she does. i can’t tell you the numbers of people who can now talk because of what GOD does through her. she blows me away. she just told me this story today and we both laughed about the humor of the puppets not only not helping but actually scaring the kids. she knows i put the story in the blog, so i’m not talking behind her back. she’s great … even is she does terrify small helpless children.