Stuttering therapy

The "dirty work of therapy" is paying off.  I am an impatient person, though, and want that payoff faster.  Learning to stutter slowly and easily as well as changing my attitude toward myself and my stutter certainly do make a difference.  If you stutter or know someone who does, this page started me reading the book which (along with Self Therapy for the Stutterer sure are life changing. 

You can't cure stuttering

This is a great article.

It helped me realize that instead of working so hard to quit stuttering, it might be better to learn to be more comfortable with myself and my imperfections or differences.  Changing my behavior just might help me stutter more easily.

I have been working through the self therapy book and it certainly has made a difference.  Mr. Williams has given me more to work on.  This is an ongoing journey, but it is getting easier. 


A friend sent me a link to a radio show about stuttering.  The lady talked about some ways to talk easier like to slide into hard words and to break up sentences into phrases.  She said Churchill did that.  It works!  And, people don't look at me funny when I do it.  I just have to remember to not rattle on and stutter, but to break a sentence up and say a few words the pause and say some more.  It doesn't work as well in a group where people jump in a talk before you are finished, but it certainly works when I am talking with one person.  It helps on the phone, too.  Happy!

Stress and stuttering

I have read so many things about people saying that they stutter when under stress or that they started stuttering after a stressful situation, that it makes me wonder how many people started stuttering after a disaster like a hurricane.  It has to be very traumatic to lose your house, car, be separated from a beloved pet, or experience the loss of life from any natural disaster.  I wouldn't be surprised it studies showed that many people who experience this start stuttering, especially a young child.  There is no way we can prevent things like tornadoes, hurricanes, fires, etc, so I guess all we can do is give as much support and love to those who go through these things. 

I can't think of an event that made my stuttering start, but any stressful situation makes it worse.  I have found that working on keeping myself calm by doing yoga, listening to relaxing music, staying away from people who annoy me, etc helps in the long run.  When I start my day in a relaxed way, it seems to go better.  It I start the day by being late and rushing, I make mistakes and stutter worse.

I am finding more and more ways to help make sure that my stuttering is as less as posible. 
I have been busy with other things and haven't been on this blog in a long time.  Blogger has changed so much, it took me forever to figure out how to delete some links that were no longer good after finally getting on.  They wanted to know everything!  I am not going to give them my phone number!  Gee.  Well, I will leave the blog up with the posts that I have made so far.  Maybe, the tidbits of things I have shared are helpful for someone.  Maybe I'll come back to writing when my life slows down a bit (if it does).  Cheers!

Another stutterer

Reading about others who stutter helps me know that I am not the only one who has to deal with not being able to speak normally. It is amazing that knowing that is such a consolation although I don't wish stuttering on anyone. After reading about Alan Rabinowitz because of seeing a link on another blog, I am enthused that therapy will work, that practicing speaking does help, and that I can become anything I wish to! This is an inspiring story for both those who stutter and those who love animals

Now, I think I will go "talk to the animals" as Alan is right; they listen and make no judgements. I never see a look of pity when I speak in front of my dogs. They adore me whether I stutter or not.

Beating the fear of stuttering

I think, for me at least, just finally accepting the fact that stuttering is a part of me and that it is not a "problem" to hide or fix has helped me stutter less. Gee, it would have been nice if I had learned this long ago! Maybe one of those therapists I went to in school had tried to teach me that, but I didn't want to listen to them then, not unless they could fix my mouth easily and quickly. Now, I know they did their best but I wasn't a good student. I was ashamed to have to leave class and go to speech. If all of the other kids had had to go to speech, too, it would have been different. If there were more who stuttered, life would not have seemed so cruel. I was piced on because I was not normal. I am still treated as "not normal" by some. I have learned that they are not worth my time and I don't need them. I keep people as friends if they can accept me as I am. I may never become like Joe Biden and be able to make great speeches in front of large crowds, but then I might!!

Life is nicer when stuttering is easier

I am finding that starting out every conversation with a new acquaintance by telling them I stutter helps me maintain eye contact, helps me relax, helps the other person react better when I do stutter because they are expecting it rather than shocked, and that I stutter less. When I do stutter, I am seeing that I stutter more easily and get past it faster. I rarely block on any sounds, now. Oh, being able to converse easier makes life so much nicer!

Maintaining eye contact

I haven't been good at posting on my blog, but I am still working on my stuttering. I am working on one thing that "Self Therapy for the Stutterer" says to do - maintaining eye contact. That is hard for me to do as I have looked away from the person I am talking to whenever I stutter or feel a block coming on ever since I was a child. It is a habit that is very hard to break. When I find that I can keep eye contact, I do see that my self esteem plays a part in it. I am better at it with friends than strangers. People who know I stutter and am doing something to try to get better are easier to keep looking at. Part of the reason may be that their expressions are not ones of pity, surprise, or repulsion, but are more of patience, acceptance, and expecting something good to happen. I find that I do better if the other person reacts better.

conventions for stutterers

I have read on several forums about people attending conferences on stuttering. It is great that there are such things. It would be nice to be able to go and meet other people who live with stuttering every day. It would be great to hear the success stories of those who have overcome their stuttering and find out how long it took. I have read that you never can stop working on overcoming it! It is with me for life so I might as well accept that fact and learn what to do and keep on working on controlling it.


I was reading a biography of Helen Steiner Rice and came upon this poem titled "Disappointment" and it seemed to relate to some of my thoughts about stuttering.

It's hard to explain - this feeling of woe,
That enwraps every part of your being
It's hard to interpret the sadness and hurt
That keep you the sunlight from seeing.
The world looks so dreary - so cold and so dull -
There isn't a thing you enjoy.
I wonder why we must experience this grief
Why happiness it does destroy.
Just an aching and breaking, a hurt and a pain
That comes from an action or word,
A longing, a gnawing, a feeling of loss
The depth of this sorrow's unheard.
And yet if we had no sorrows
How valueless joy would be,
For we never could know the depth and height
Of triumph and victory!

- Helen Steiner Rice

Making progress

Well, I have an easier time most days, but still need work. I am doing good at talking "slowly and deliberately." That is easier for me than sliding into words that are hard. Some have gotten easier, but I still need work on others. Telling people that I stutter sure does help me relax and talk better and most people seem patient and understanding. My next step is to work on the gestures and grimaces I have acquired over the years. Oh, boy!

Knowing others stutter, too

Knowing that you are not the only one who stutters makes life a little easier. If they can work on techniques to control their speech, so can I. I will not limit myself by taking menial jobs just because of my stuttering. Reading about other stutterers' successes a little each day helps me to "keep on keeping on."

Stuttering does not ruin us

Sometimes I find myself feeling alone and wishing I were never born because I stutter. But, when I get like that, I think of a girl I met when I was in second grade. She was born with a very ugly face. She was normal in every other way, but it was hard to look at her and not feel sorry for her. But, she had the best attitude and was so likeable after I got to know her. She was so much fun. She never made any comments about the way other people looked, talked, or acted. After you got to know her, you didn't seem to notice how ugly she was. She couldn't help how she was born or how her face looked. What she did do was to be so kind, thoughtful, interesting, and fun that you enjoyed being around her. She didn't feel sorry for herself so you couldn't feel sorry for her, at least not for long. I have often wondered what happened to her as she got older. We moved and I never kept in touch with her. I don't even remember her name. I hope life treated her as well as she treated life and others. Those of us who stutter could learn from her. We need to embrace ourselves as we are and let people see that stuttering does not ruin us as people.

Slid backwards

Well, I have been despondant because I let some dumb remarks and reactions to my stuttering get to me. I was rocking along doing very well with my stuttering coming easily and with no blocks, but then I had several bad days in a row. When some "friends" were unkind and impatient with me, I got worse. Memories from childhood teasing and time that I couldn't say what I wanted came flooding in. I can't change the past and I don't know how to change my reaction to the cruel people in this world who treat me like I am retarded or something. I thought I had gotten past that, and I think I have with strangers, but it really hurts when someone you think is a friend treats you unkindly. I wish they could understand; sometimes I wish they could live the life of a someone who stutters for just a week so they could see what we go through and feel how we feel.

I have picked myself up again and have started over with "Self Therapy for the Stutterer" and am more determined than ever to improve my speach on my own since I can't go to a speech therapist. If others can do it, so can I.

So, here I go not hiding my stuttering, no avoidance stuff, letting the stuttering happen easily, and smooth talking. I think I will read to my teddy bear tonight.

Still practicing

I have been practicing the easy onset speach and am still having trouble with some words, particulary "p" and "b." I have learned to slow down and don't talk so fast that I stumble over everything I try to say. Talking slowly and with pauses helps me stay in control of my speech. I am still working on those words that are hard for me - most of them start with "p" and "b" and cause me much tension. Self Therapy for the Stutterer says it best: "More likely you blocked because you held your mouth in a fixed postion. In other words, you pressed your lips together so tightly on the 'p' sound that you couldn't separate them and let the air escape. You couldn't uncork your mouth because you were making such a hard tight contact." That's what happens to me! I just have to learn to uncork my mouth.

Hard time of the year

This is a hard time for me. I always stutter more over the Christmas holidays. Everything and everybody seem to be in double time and I can't keep up with them. I get lost in the crowds and conversations. Nobody has time for me to say what I want to say. They interrupt or try to help, but never finish my sentence with what I started out to say.

I love the Christmas music, the sparkling lights everywhere, and giving gifts but I find myself doing things alone and enjoying it more. I can walk my dog and talk to her while enjoying seeing the decorations at houses in our neighborhood. I can listen to the radio or CDs of Christmas carols. I enjoy shopping on the internet much more than getting in the stores. I'll invite one friend over at a time and enjoy that, but never get in a crowd like at a party or at home with all of the relatives. My friends understand me much more than family who I rarely see do.

I know I am not the only one who stutters who feels this way. I bet others with similar problems have a similar Christmas.

Easy Onset Speaking

I have been working on "easy onset" talking. That is sliding into every sound of a word and stretching out the vowels and consonants. It is amazing how an extremely slow drawn-out manner of talking gives me better speech. The book says "stretch out and prolong all your voicing of sounds, particularly the starting sounds. And prolong all transitions between all sounds (consonant and vowel) with light, easy contacts on the consonants."

My stuttering has lessened greatly since I have learned to do the "easy onset" type of speaking. I had to spend some time practicing by myself and I still have trouble with "p" and "b." I speak slower and it seems unnatural but at least I am not stuttering as much and people understand what I am saying. Those that know me know that I am not dumb, and I don't care what anyone else thinks!


I was surprised when I caught a glimpse of myself in a mirror while talking (or trying to talk) to a clerk in a hotel. There was a wall of mirror behind her and I could see myself. I never realized what I did while trying to talk and get past my stuttering and blocks! I guess I was concentrating so much on my speech that I didn't realize what the rest of me was doing. When I got to my room, I stood in front of the mirror and and talked, but couldn't reproduce the same response. I guess it was because I was alone in the room. I am going to start putting my hands in my pockets or clasp them together so I don't twist my hair, slap myself, and pull at things like my ear. Gee, it is amazing that lady didn't laugh at loud or call a cop.


I will think "happy" and be happy. Whenever someone laughs at my stuttering or teases me about it, I am just ignoring them. I don't need that kind of people around. I will make time for having friendships with people who are kind, respectful, cheerful, and fun. I have accepted the fact that I stutter, and I am going to be happy with it and enjoy life while I improve my speech. I would rather have a speech problem that have the problem of being rude and disrespectful. I bet I get better at my speech long before they change their ways of treating others!

Please don't interrupt me

I have the perfect response to people who interrupt and say what they think you are trying to say when you are stuttering! It is in Frederick Pemberton Murray's book "A Stutterer's Story." He tells that Jack Paar "was blocking when a woman broke in with a statement of her own. He turned to her with a smile and said, 'Please don't interrupt me when I'm stuttering.'"
What a perfect response! I am going to try that one.

Eye Contact

I am working on another step towards improvement, and that is eye contact. I didn't realize how little I really looked at the people I was trying to talk with. It does make a difference in how you talk when you are looking at the person. It helps them in their reaction to your stuttering, too. I find that it is easier to do this with people I am comfortable with right now and still notice that I can't keep eye contact when I stutter while talking with strangers. It is such an ingrained response that I have been doing for so long. I will keep on working on it, though. I will improve with maintaining eye contact and my speech will improve, too. I have to have faith.

Working through it

I have read the first few chapters of "Self-Therapy for the Stutterer" by The Stuttering Foundation of America up to the start of the ground rules. Very inspirational. As I read, I underline things I feel apply to my stuttering and how I feel about it. I put a mark by things I found especially helpful. I am making a list of particular things I need to work on. I think admitting to others that I stutter instead of trying to hide it has been the best thing I have ever done. Because of that, I can now go to the next step of working on talking easier with soft starts.

Allowing myself to be me!

I will learn to control my stuttering. I will reduce my fear of stuttering. I will face those words that I have trouble with and stutter on through them until it gets easier and easier. I will look people in the eye and not be ashamed that I don't talk like they do. I have important things to say, and I am not going to let stuttering hold me back. I must think positive every day, all day, and go to bed at night proud that I am allowing myself to be me!

Eva Woolwine inspires me!

In my quest for someone to model movitation, I have found Eva Woolwine! Check out the links I added on the right. She certainly is an inspiration for all of us!


As I work through my self-therapy book, it says "If you are sincerely interested in working on your speech, you will need to have a strong motivation to overcome your difficulty and a sincere determination to follow through on the suggested procedures and assignments. The importance of motivation cannot be exaggerated, and success or failure of therapy will depend on your commitment in following through."

Well, I think I have been motivated and determined as I really want to stop stuttering. I will have to be diligent in practicing and concentrating on every new technique I learn.

Stuttering is tough

"Stuttering is a tough opponent. It never gives up. You've got to keep knocking it down to stay in command." Starbuck

Stuttering is my problem

We all have to deal with our own problems. It is healthy for us to work through problems and learn to cope. Stuttering is my problem and I will deal with it, cope with it, and learn from it. There are times that I wish I didn't have this problem to deal with or cope with, but other people have other problems that I would not want to have either. I will take what life has handed me and do my best. Everyone has good days and bad days. I will concentrate on waking up and deciding to have a good day no matter what! If I stutter, I will just keep on the best I can and not worry about it. If other people don't like my stuttering, that is their problem and they'll have to deal with that.

Words that won't work

Surprise! I have never blocked on a word beginning with an "n." I am always on guard to stutter on other letters, but "n" has never given me problems. It did today. Wonders will never cease. It just shows that I definitely need to keep on working on my stuttering.

Until I open my mouth

Everything was beautiful this morning. The birds were singing. The sky was a pretty blue with puffy white clouds. There was a gentle breeze blowing. The day started out so wonderful. I was feeling good and smiling inside. I wish the entire day had gone that way. It was fine until I opened my mouth to speak! Oh, if the words would just flow smoothly all of the time.

Thank you

I stood in front of the mirror by myself and said "thank you" over and over concentrating on how I formed the words. Then, I went to a friend's house and tried saying "thank you" and found that I got it out easier than I used to, but I felt my face making contortions and seem to remember tapping my thigh with my right hand. My friend knows that I stutter as she is one that I told. She was very patient and understanding but mentioned that it was the first time she had heard me say "thank you." She guessed that it must have been because I had trouble getting it out. She said that it must be really frustrating to not be able to say what you want to say. Oh, if she really knew! If people who are fluent could experience one day of what we go through, they might react differently to our stuttering.

Practice, practice, practice

I have always been a fast talker. I guess I figured I needed to get whatever I wanted to say out quickly before someone else started talking. I can't stand it when you are in a conversation and two or more people are talking at the same time! I am practicing talking slower and pausing more often. I find that I am not as tense and that I manage to say things in just a short a period of time because there is less stuttering.


Well, I decided that one of the most important words that I needed to start using instead of substituting was "thank." I would always say "appreciate it" which usualy came out more like "preciate it" instead of "thank you." I had practiced when I was by myself and was saying "thank you" just fine. But when a guy held the door for me today and I tried to say "thank you" I couldn't get it out! Nothing came out; I couldn't even get out my usual "preciate it." I ended up just nodding my head and feeling stupid. He didn't seem to notice, so hopefully he didn't tell anyone I had gone crazy. I will keep trying and will never give up!

Admitting that I stutter is easier than not using the tricks

I have found that admitting I stutter is easier than not hiding my stuttering. I have been substituting words for words that I stutter on and using other tricks too long! Everyone at work now knows that I am a stutterer. I have also talked to some people at church and let them know. They were very understanding and knew others who stuttered. One has a grandson who is in speech therapy for stuttering. Well, if I can do this step of admitting my stuttering, I can surely stop using tricks to cover it up. Perhaps, I should pick one of my feared words and practice using it. That will be a start!

Admitted my stuttering to two people

I now have admitted that I am a stutterer to two people at work. After telling Joyce about my affliction, she had to go and tell others. My plan of telling people one at a time didn't work, but that's okay. At least Joyce is good natured about it and is encouraging others to help me by slowing their speech. She wants to help. She is interested in learning more about stuttering so I shared my favorite web site with her. She knows someone who has a child who just started stuttering and is full of questions. Maybe the timing of my deciding to go to stop using my coverup tricks and to admit that I am a stutterer was good as it brought help to a young child and that family.

Stuttering Openly

It is great to have a friend that you can try things on! Cindy and I met for lunch, and I didn't try to hide my stuttering that is as long as it was just us at the table. We had a few minutes by ourselves but when another coworker joined us, I immediately fell back into my old habits. Old habits are hard to break, plus I can see that this process of admitting to others that I am a stutterer and stopping the tricks I use to hide my stutter is not something that will happen in a short time. They say "patience is a virtue" so I will try to be patient with myself - something that I have always wanted others to be with me!

Easier Said than Done!

Nobody can say that I haven't tried. This is going to take some practice! Stopping some of the tricks I have been using to hide my stuttering is hard. I didn't realize how often I did it. I have really become good at not being myself, or at least not talking like myself. I would start the day thinking that I would just stutter right on through a word, but find myself substituting a stupid phrase that meant the same thing as one word, using a word that didn't really express what I meant, or waiting for the other person to complete my sentence as they often do.

It is amazing what this does to my self esteem! I want to speak for myself and say what I want to say. I am going to work on this until I can do it. I am going to try doing it with one person until I no longer use my old tricks with them, then I'll work on doing it in situations where the people don't know me like ordering in a restaurant. The telephone has to be last. Let's see how that works.

Now that I have a plan, who am I going to talk to and try NOT using my stuttering tricks? Certainly not my mother. I have already talked to a coworker about stuttering and admitted that I stutter. She didn't believe me; I cover it up too well. Okay, tomorrow when Cindy and I are at lunch for one hour, I will concentrate on not using those tricks.

Stuttering - Muscular or Mental Process?

In order to control my stuttering, I have to think about what I am doing now. According to "Self Therapy for the Stutterer," I "need to be concerned about what [I] am doing now that perpetuates and maintains [my] difficulty, not about what happened in the past.

The worse thing that I am doing, it seems, is trying NOT to stutter! "The mechanism of speech is so delicately balanced that in trying to stop stuttering, you may unwittingly make it worse." I didn't realize that I was doing that.

"The stutterer attempts to force the articulation of his words and speaking now becomes a muscular rather than a mental process." - Bluemel

It seems like a mental process to me! I am constantly thinking about talking and thinking ahead so that I can get around words that cause me problems.

First things first

The first thing is to admit that I need to change the way I am talking.

"You must see that the old solutions, the things you have done to help yourself over the years simply do not work." (Self Therapy for the Stutterer)

Oh, getting out of the old ruts and stopping some of my bad methods of talking will take some practice - lots and lots of practice - but I will try.

Ready to talk!

Ok, with a blog, I can really talk! I can chat and not have anyone snicker behind a hand over their mouth or laugh out loud or giggle in groups while they point at me. I know that I am not dumb; I just can't say the things that are going on in my head. Well, I am working on my stuttering, and one day I will be able to say those things that are on my mind without stuttering and stumbling and making people feel embarassed to be around me. This is the first day of the rest of my life and I can only go up, up, up to my goal of being fluent.