Why We Must Know More

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Re: Interesting article...

From: Darrell Dodge
Date: 17 Oct 2004
Time: 15:44:11 -0500
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Hi Retz: I am a bit confused by your post, even after reading it several times. In the first place, OF COURSE we emphasize the concept that fluency therapy is about communication and about talking more. Stutering HAS to be OK for anyone who stutters. I encourage people to gauge progress in therapy by how much the person is freely speaking and communicating, not by how fluent he/she is. To my mind, greater fluency IS more talking, which is the goal. This is a continual challenge when counseling parents and adults because they have a tendency to be highly fluency-oriented, and this is one reason why I speak with parents either before or after every session and listen carefully to the language they're using. When I hear a child walking down the stairs from my clinic chattering away with his/her mom or dad, it's one sign that progress is being made. Of course, it's easier for me to get this across because I stutter all the time when speaking with parents and my clients. But I make a point of showing them how I used to stutter (as best as I can, anyway) and contrast that with my present, easier form of stuttering. Rather than belabor this, may I suggest that you type the words "The Land of Fluency" into your Web browser? You will find there a story that communicates my views on this matter. I know that Dr. Ramig shares these views because he helped me come to understand how very important they are. There does not need to be a contradiction between improving fluency and improving communication. The reason I'm so confused by your post is that it never even occurred to me that there was such a contradiction, at least as far as the so-called Integrated Approach is concerned. Thanks for writing. I think it's important to share views about these issues. - Darrell

Last changed: 02/21/07