From Isolation to Intimacy: Making Friends Without Words
If you have no language, how can you make yourself understood, let alone make friends? Phoebe Caldwell has worked for many years with people with severe intellectual disabilities and/or autistic spectrum disorder who are non-verbal, and whose inability to communicate has led to unhappy and often violent behaviour. In this new book she explores the nature of close relationships, and shows how these are based not so much on words as on the ability to listen, pay attention, and respond in terms that are familiar to the other person.
This is the key to Intensive Interaction, which she shows is a straightforward and uncomplicated way, through attending to body language and other non-verbal means of communication, of establishing contact and building a relationship with people who are non-verbal, even those in a state of considerable distress. This simple method is accessible to anyone who lives or works with such people, and is shown to transform lives and to introduce a sense of fun, of participation and of intimacy, as trust and familiarity are established.