SMA offers a wealth of resources for parent use in informing professionals, teachers and others who interact with their child about selective mutism. We recommend that parents provide these resources to help educate others about SM. Family and Professional memberships with SMA also provide many opportunities for interaction with experts and experienced parents and teachers among other benefits to help educate yourself and others about SM. Advocacy for SM consists of educating oneself, educating others who interact with the child with SM, developing a plan to increase the child’s comfort and facilitate improvement at school and other social settings, and finding a treating professional who will help develop appropriate treatment and also serve as an advocate for the child.
Parents and professionals should remove all pressures and expectations for the child to speak. This conveys to the child that he/she is understood, that he/she is scared to speak and has difficulty speaking at times. Rest assured that most parents and professionals are “guilty” of using pressure or bribes with a child to encourage speaking before they learn more about SM, however, most report that removing these pressures and letting the child know that they understand has been the beginning of helping a child to overcome his/her symptoms.