Recently an observation of case material seen in a practice of child psychiatry has suggested that there is a rather serious and potentially damaging incubation period that exists in a variety of syndromes which eventually require psychiatric care. Initially this period seems to relate to the delayed observations of parents concerning this behavior and their reluctance to admit it. This may be exaggerated by diagnostic and referral delays on the part of the physicians to whom the parents first take their children.
What impresses the psychiatrist when he sees such children is that symptomatology has been present over a period of time and in rather consistent amounts and yet the parents have often been reassured on the basis that he will "grow out of it." Psychiatric conditions in childhood rarely present themselves as emergencies or even as acute situations. It is more frequently obvious that the pattern of behavior in