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Phone Conversations With An Aphasiac
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Replies: 4 - Pages: [1] - Last reply: 2021-11-22 06:46:16 - By: Sara Bronson
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Laurie Principe
(Member)

Posts: 1
Registered:
2021-04-26 00:03:56

My mother-in-law is located far from us and we can only communicate on the phone. She would like to have longer converstations with us, but that is difficult and frustrating for all of us. Do you have any suggestions on verbal games or other techniques that we could do with her that would help her with aphasia and at the same time make us all feel like we had a pleasant and productive phone conversation? Thanks.

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(Member)

Posts: 7
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2022-01-01 00:00:00

Dear Laurie,
I am sorry for your frustration. I know how important it is for both your mother-in-law and your family to communicate. One of most important aspects of aphasia rehabilitation is to continue to communicate in what ever mode is possible. However you do present with a difficult situation. I have a couple of thoughts for you. Try and set up an email account or an instant messaging account that you can all use. I realize this will not give you that personal voice connection however you can use it in the following ways. Prior to your phone conversation, you could write an email with various questions and information that has occurred with your family during the week. Your mother-in-law could read the questions and information and can get prepared to answer the questions and make conversational comments about your familie’s activities. So when you call her over the weekend she won’t have difficulty finding the right words or formulating sentences. You could also prepare some written scripts for her to practice at home that she can then use over the phone. Additionally, she could prepare some information that she wants you to know, again, prior to the phone conversation. She could use an audio recorder or a sofware program on the computer to tape the information that she wants to share and then she can either play the recording over the phone or practice saying it before the actual telephone conversation. And finally, keep in mind that the best time to speak to anyone with aphasia is when they are well rested. So possibly a morning conversation would be better than one in the evening. Also, open ended questions are the most difficult to answer spontaneously. Try and give some sentence starters and some choices for her to pick from so she doesn’t have to generate all the words quickly. Guess if you are unsure of her message. And in the end, try to add some humor because although you are both trying so hard to communicate sometimes the message just gets lost in the interaction and that’s ok, just try and laugh about it.
Good Luck!
Sincerely, Carole Pomilio

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Audrey Holland
(Member)

Posts: 49
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2021-04-26 00:03:56

Carole has written a wonderful response, with great ideas for you to use with your aphasic mother in law. I have little to add except that I would suggest you take a few minutes to set up Skype accounts for both of you. Skype is free when both users have accounts, (and also cheaper than most commercial rates for long distance). If you have a computer with WebCam capabilities , cheap cameras on both ends will also provide video feedback, and as i am sure you know, visual input is really helpful to communication. Finally, with Skype you can also text message, and I think it is possible to text and talk simultaneously (not sure about this). I sound like I work for Skype-I don’t….but I find the service fantastically useful for communication disorders. Good luck with this! Audrey Holland

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Sara Bronson
(Member)

Posts: 1
Registered:
2021-04-26 00:03:56

Try a video phone! 90% of communication is non-verbal. Most people with aphasia tell me that talking on the phone is the hardest thing to do. When there is visual feedback conversationi are natural again. I’m not trying to sell this but we have ours through http://www.cjrealthime.acnrep.com.
ID# 01728541. It is inexpensive, effective and the phone is free.

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