Imagine not being able to trust a basic motor skill, which is used thousands of times per day. That is the problem I face, along with millions of other stutterers.
According to popular statistics, five percent of children and one percent of the adult population stutters. Based on a world population of 6.5 billion people, that statistic approximates that over 65,000,000 people stutter.
This number may appear high because most live as Covert Stutterers. Covert Stutterers are able to avoid the actual stutter with a combination of silence and “Word Switching” (changing words on the fly when you foresee trouble). Many are able to hide their stutter even from family and their closest friends.
Many of us have let avoidance become so strong, that major life decisions are based on speech avoidance. Decisions like your chosen career, where you work, who you date, what you buy, and even what you eat.
How has this affected me? I find most educated people can deal with it in person. However, communicating over the telephone with anybody or in person with un-educated people is where most of my real problems occur.
Why is such a personal ‘handicap’ on my professional website? While most educated people understand this glitch does not affect my work, it still catches people by surprise. And surprising new clients is never appreciated. 😉
If you want to know more, here are a few links :
Wikipedia Article for “Stutter”
The Stuttering Homepage
Facts About Stuttering
Answers for Employers
Speech Foundation of Ontario
Canadian Association of People Who Stutter
The Demosthenes Society
Rommel’s Charity BBQ
Article by a PFSP participant
Blog-Pebbles Under the Tongue (My PFSP therapy)
Blog-The Stuttering Brain
Blog-Parole de bčgue (French)
Forum-Parole de bčgues (French)