Thanks To My Stutter, I'm Never Lost For Words

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Re: You do have a way with words

From: Alan Badmington (to John)
Date: 23 Oct 2008
Time: 04:40:02 -0500
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Hi John, Thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule to respond to my paper. It was kind of you to write in such a vein. As I mentioned in the opening paragraph, I have never viewed my stuttering as a gift – it created far too much heartache and disappointment for me ever to consider it in that light. However, in addition to the skills and attributes that I acquired (as a result of the difficulties I encountered during my life), my stuttering history has been instrumental in allowing me to travel extensively in recent years. I have indulged in SO much talking, with SO many people, in SO many different parts of the world. Indeed, I have had the pleasure of spending time in your company on three different continents. In your post, you make reference to the time we first met in San Francisco in August 2000. That meeting had a huge impact upon my life. A few months earlier, I had been introduced to your stuttering hexagon concept while attending my initial McGuire Programme course in the UK. For the first time in my life, I understood that whether or not I stuttered depended on so many different factors – I realized that it was not just about the mechanics of speech. That insight had a huge impact in assisting me to deal with my issues in relation to stuttering/communication. The experiences that I encountered in the USA in 2000 were invaluable. I will never forget those lengthy conversations we enjoyed over dinner – into the early hours. (Our vocal cords must be so resilient) :-) You were the first person to opine that I was a good conversationalist – you even said that I was inspirational (maybe it was the alcohol talking) :-) That had such a positive influence upon my hexagon and, subsequently, my life. For over 50 years, I had struggled to talk to people; I had been castigated for the manner in which I gave evidence in court; a Chief Constable had prematurely terminated a Promotion Board interview because I was “wasting his time” with my hesitant speech; and I had failed miserably to give a speech at my wedding. Your comments took some time to sink in because I had never considered myself to possess either of those qualities. Various components in my hexagon changed considerably that night. John, your views and encouragement have contributed hugely to the exciting paths I have trodden during the past eight years. I thank you for your interest, support and friendship. Chat soon! Kindest regards Alan

Last changed: 10/23/08