Stuttering is not the problem

Photo Credit: The Stuttering Foundation
 
I wonder if everyone in the world was aware of stuttering, would it even be a problem. For most of my life, I always thought stuttering was not ok and that somehow I was doing something wrong. That was creating a lot of pressure for me and my speech to always try to perform at a fluent level. 

I don’t believe stuttering is the problem, but rather the lack of stuttering awareness. People probably don’t even notice your stutter so just keep talking!  If they have some sort of weird look or giggle, they are likely unaware of what’s happening with the way the words are being spoken. That’s a great opportunity to educate the listener about stuttering. The next time they meet someone whose words aren’t coming out fluently, that listener will be aware of what’s happening and likely be more receptive and create less pressure for the person with the stutter. 

I admit there are times when I don’t want to educate the world, I just simply want my coffee. Recently I stuttered on a coffee order, and actually took me a bit by surprise. I wasn’t expecting the speech block so just kind of laughed to myself thinking “oh where did you come from little speech block?”  The barista also giggled which was fine with me since I initiated the laugh at my stutter. I likely missed out on an opportunity to talk about stuttering but sometimes the timing isn’t that convenient. Once I begin a discussion around stuttering, I can usually talk about it for quite some time. For someone who stutters, the irony is that I sure like to talk a lot!

Stuttering is OK!  Don’t feel pressured to conform to the fluent world we live in. Take your time and speak your mind.