Meet Olivia

Olivia was around 4 years old when her parents began to notice she was mainly mute when with other adults outside of the home. When her family found the SMart Center, they began to see Olivia make amazing progress through S-CAT® strategies like Handover/Takeover™ and practicing exposures. She is now a senior in high school and preparing to go to college next year to major in psychology.

Read more about Olivia’s SM journey below!

How old was your child when you first noticed he/she was mute in select settings?

4 or 5 years old.

Please briefly summarize where/when your child was mute/not mute (2-3 sentences is fine!)

Liv was mute mostly outside the home with adults. Liv was very talkative at home and at school with other kids.

Was your child in treatment for Selective Mutism, Social Anxiety, or related disorders before finding the SMart Center? 


What brought you to seek treatment at the SMart Center? 

We found the SMart Center first. We were lucky it was close to home.

What SMart Center services did you use? 

  • Treatment Professional Consultation
  • Follow-Ups
  • Assessments
  • Books

How often do/did you consult with the SMart Center?

Every few months.

What changes have you noticed? Please describe your child’s overall progress, including functioning in school, at home, with friends and teachers, and any changes you have seen since starting treatment.

Liv is a senior now. It’s been many years since we have been To the center. Liv is no longer mute. Liv is at a votech school for Early Childhood Education and works at the YMCA. Liv has friends and a boyfriend and plans to go to college next year for psychology.

What S-CAT® strategies helped the most?

Practicing and exposure anywhere we could at school, parties and restaurants. Handover/takeover. A rewards system was important for Liv.

Do you have any “key” advice for parents going through it now?

Keep going! Don’t give up.

If your child/teen is willing to share a brief sentence or two about he/she is feeling now, please enter it below.

“Selective Mutism is so hard to explain to anyone that doesn’t have it, but I’m so grateful I had people around me to support me and help me become the person I am today. Even though I may not be the most talkative still, I have gotten so much better with it and life feels so much easier.”