What is stuttering? - defining stuttering from the speaker's viewpoint

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Defining Stuttering

From: Keith Boss, Chair of ISA Outreach
Date: 01 Oct 2008
Time: 07:05:12 -0500
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Mark, Like the previous people who posted Dave and Pamela, I can now identify with Tom, Dick and Harry. Thank you for including this paper for wider professional scrutiny. I give my wholehearted support in your quest to rationalize the plethora of stuttering definitions. As you indicate, there are many definitions. Most of them are useful in their own way, in context. But we live in an age where more research is being done on many aspects of both stuttering and human development. It is very appropriate at this time to consider the use of a new term to describe the hidden emotional aspect of a stutterers belief about himself (herself) and how humankind perceives their communication skills (or lack of them). Such a new term will help in diagnosis and will help trainees as well as SLPs and SLTs to home in on the most serious problem their client should be encouraged to address. May I make one suggestion? At the Oxford Disfluency Conference in July in the UK, one of your audience suggested you include Cluttering. I would suggest that when you revise this work, based on comments over the next 22 days, you do try to include mention of cluttering. Even if it is to say you have excluded comments for reasons A,B,C. One final point. When we (profesional and potential client) use a term like Stuttered Speech Syndrome (social phobia) along with emotions such as social anxiety disorder, feelings of panic and loss of control, situation avoidance, attitudes of low self- confidence and low self-esteem, and emotions of frustration and anxiety, we must remember we are not alone having those hidden issues. Many people who are Registered Disabled (10% of humankind) have these issues. A significant percentage or the rest of the population have similar issues (avoiding socialising; avoiding using the phone; low self esteem; to name but a few). I am wondering how we can best address these issues for stutterers and the rest of humankind. On the 22nd October 2008 I plan to open a new website to see if I can do just that. It will begin with the customary blog, but will include more. Mark, once again I thank you. Please keep on with your efforts to help the Stuttering Community to help itself. I know other members of the ISA Boards feel you are right to continue with this work. Keith

Last changed: 10/01/08