Artist Stephi Lee open up about her childhood selective mutism, where she would only talk to her mom and her best friend. It's cool to see that it got resolved.
Current research links selective mutism with anxiety. Via SMart Center:
The majority of children with Selective Mutism have a genetic predisposition to anxiety. In other words, they have inherited a tendency to be anxious from one or more family members. Very often, these children show signs of severe anxiety, such as separation anxiety, frequent tantrums and crying, moodiness, inflexibility, sleep problems, and extreme shyness from infancy on.
Children with Selective Mutism often have severely inhibited temperaments. Studies show that individuals with inhibited temperaments are more prone to anxiety than those without shy temperaments. Most, if not all, of the distinctive behavioral characteristics that children with Selective Mutism portray can be explained by the studied hypothesis that children with inhibited temperaments have a decreased threshold of excitability in the almond-shaped area of the brain called the amygdala. When confronted with a fearful scenario, the amygdala receives signals of potential danger (from the sympathetic nervous system) and begins to set off a series of reactions that will help individuals protect themselves. In the case of children with Selective Mutism, the fearful scenarios are social settings such as birthday parties, school, family gatherings, routine errands, etc.
Bonus video: Stephi gave up Boston winters to live in a car full-time. She takes fans on a tour of her living space, a tricked out Honda Element:
She also shares some examples of her lovely artwork: