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Won't Recite

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    Won't Recite

    My son won't recite. Anything in choro drives him into his shell. At first I thought he needed time and let him sit along and listen. However, now it is getting worse. He will no longer even join in any prayers during Mass (Church service). His older brother absolutely loves memory work and recitation, and my younger son is particularly put off when he is around.

    He has CAPD and has always found multiple voices painful to listen to. Setting memory work to music just gets his shackles up (except for Colin Buchanan's Isaiah 53:6 ๐Ÿ˜„) He also has ODD and is 12, amongst his other troubles, so I am not sure how much is one problem and how much the other, if that makes sense.

    I would really like help or suggestions to get him going with his memory work and Latin this year, please.


    Naxi , Good morning and Happy New Year!

    When my son was your son's age he began evidencing ODD and avoidance. With these came manipulation if I was not careful. The most helpful thing for me was to assure him that the work he attempted to sidestep, whatever it was, would be required. He had a choice as to how he might accomplish the work, but he could not unilaterally excuse himself from it.

    In your situation, you might acknowledge that reciting in choro can be difficult or even painful for him, so you will now offer him several options. Of course he may choose to recite with the family and pray with the church members, but if he wishes to opt out of choral recitation or prayer he may do any of these instead:

    1. Recite or pray with you individually when no one, including his older brother, hovers or joins in.
    2. Write or type all recitations or prayers from memory into a Recitation Book or Prayer Book.
    3. Give you a third acceptable alternative you might not have considered.

    If he chooses #3, tell him to think it through to give you his best suggestion and you will consider it.

    If you do not approve #3, he will need to choose #1 or #2.

    If he still needs help with learning from memory and might be balking due to embarrassment, he may record the recitations or prayers/creeds/confessions for listening in his free time.

    More than anything, you are making it clear that you appreciate his very real difficulties, but you care enough not to waver on the expectation of learning, praying, and strengthening his mind.


      Thank you! It is so helpful to have people who have been there before.

      I like the idea of giving him option #3 from the beginning. I have never thought of that before. He has spent his life being an option #3 kind of guy, and while he can only do that if we approve, I still am left feeling like I have capitulated. By stipulating it from the beginning, neither of us loses our power or respect.