Monday, 26 May 2008

One's stuttering evolution?

Maybe I'm just overthinking things or my memorys hazy; even if I'm far from the age of dellusion, but am I the only one whose stuttering behaviour seems to alter over time? What I mean is that when I look back ten years, or even five, I remember myself trying to control my stutter in a different manner.

For example, when I was a child I began to develop the head tilts and ticks which are common among fellow stutterers. I eventually stopped doing this after my father shouted at me to stop doing so. Although it was pretty brutal for me back then, it certainly did make me stop the ticks - obviously not the stutter.

From then on, in my early teens, I would stutter and just keep trying to force the word out until I ran out of air and keep going. If I can recall correctly my stutter wasn't as bad as it can be nowadays, but maybe that's just wishful thinking? Anyway, now two things happen:

  1. I try to speak past the block, it fails, and I stutter and stutter till after a few seconds of stuttering I stop. I then try to relax and say what I want to.
  2. I notice the block, stop, try to relax and say what I want to.
Sounds pretty decent no? Well, not really. What basically happens is that the blocks still there and I just end up repeating the prior few words a lot until I can manage to get past the block. So basically what this means is that on a bad day I end up saying a sentence which is highly fragmented. And I can only imagine how difficult it might be for those who are trying to listen and grasp what I'm saying. Admittedly, the latter approach does work occasionally.

So I'm starting to wonder to myself is it better to try and stammer past the block or to take a break and try to relax? Not for me, but for those listening.

As for the head tilts, I'm pretty sure I don't do those anymore but I'm fairly sure the facial ticks have crept back.

As krass as it may sound, is there a better way to stutter? Has anybody else noticed how their stutter has evolved over their lifetime?

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