Wednesday, March 12, 2008

What has helped me become more fluent- Where do I begin?

I am asked all the time how I have become more fluent over the years. I have to tell you that I do try and use fluency shaping tools as much as I can. These involve taking a full breath before I speak, using gentle onsets and using prolongations. The road to this journey has been long and filled with alot of hard work. When I first learned all of these tools at an intensive program I wasn't able to use them in the "real world". I was still in the denial stage and didn't want to sound different. I personally never was able to accept stuttering until about 5 years ago and have learned not to be ashamed of it. I am proud of who I am and the fluency I have achieved. People often ask me if I sound robotic using these tools. I don't think so, maybe I did when I first learned them. I also talk the talk and walk the walk. What do I mean by that? My father stuttered, my daughter stuttered from age 2 1/2 to age 4, and I treat people who stutter. I talk about stuttering often and love helping parents, children and adults who stutter. My friends think I am obsessed with the topic of stuttering. I probably am. I go to continuous conferences on stuttering and have many friends and colleagues who stutter. I am curious what has helped others who stutter. Looking forward to hearing from you.

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