So I am one of the unfortunate souls who goes nonverbal whenever I get severely stressed out and/or self-loathing (because I think I screwed something up between me and my partner)
To help others out who have possibly had this issue (or have a partner who have this issue), here’s some tips that might help you!
- BE PATIENT! Give them time to formulate words. Give them time to ground themselves. Don’t get mad at them if it’s only a 1-5 word response, and/or they stutter. They are TRYING to speak to you, but their anxiety is preventing them.
- Ask questions that will be simple “yes” or “no” answers. This requires precision with your words (for example: “ Do you want me to hug you? Do you want me to put a blanket around you?”).
- Offer them a notepad with writing utensil. If they can’t speak for whatever reason, they might be able to write down what is on their mind. There are some applications out there that helps individuals who are nonverbal
- Give them something cold to hold that has texture (such as an orange).This can help ground the individual and bring them back to reality.
- After the incident, offer to talk about it in a safe, comfortable setting. Your partner might be able to better talk about the specific incident after the incident has taken place. They will have had time to process what had happened.
- Take them out of the stressful environment. If there is something (or someone) in the room stressing them out, offer to remove it. Be specific with your questions. This might help them be able to form words again.
Finally another nonverbal!! This will actually help me