'I’ve had a stammer since I was a child.'
'In everyday life, I’ve been perceived as being a ‘non-stammerer’ to others, even to lots of people close to me. This was due in part to the ‘mild’ nature of my stammer (i.e. my speech is not that different from that of my interlocutors) and also due to the various techniques I used to avoid my mild stutters being perceived by them (e.g. by using fillers, pauses and other avoidance techniques). The anxiety that I felt of being seen to stammer was variable, ranging from insignificant with some people and extremely high in other situations.'
'I have come to learn (or rather admit to myself) that the term a ‘mild' stammer is a misnomer. Even with a ‘mild’ stammer, my speech impediment has had a significant negative effect on me at times. For example, it had a negative impact during my oral examinations at university where I experienced performance-anxiety and where I was not able to show my true abilities due to my thoughts, feelings and anxiety in those situations.'
'I wasn’t able to admit to myself that I needed help, or ask for help, until I had needed help for a long, long time.'
'After years of hiding my stammer, I finally came to face a crisis. My toughness and hiding had dragged me into a deep, dark hole.'
'That was how I ended up starting this course in September 2016.'
'It ended up being life-changing.'
'Through therapy and lots of hard work, I have worked through many issues, including my negative thoughts and feelings about stammering. The group has given me expertise, support and guidance. I feel, and am, a whole lot better. I see future oral examinations or presentations of any kind as a challenge to be welcomed, not a situation that will induce panic or failure in me, something to avoid. That’s huge.'
'Over the course of several months, you will start to work on all the ways in which you hide. You will see after 6 months how far you have come. I recommend this course and the course tutor very highly.'