Our guest chat hosts tonight, March 26, 2001, are Vivian Sheehan, MA, CCC/SLP,
Dale F. Williams, Ph.D., CCC/SLP, and Peter Dugan, M.Ed, CCC/SLP.
These three SLPs will chat about stuttering therapy. They will also be conducting a
STUTTERING THERAPY INSTITUTE on May 3, 2001 at the Academy of Private Practice in Speech Pathology and Audiology (APPSPA) Spring Conference in Delray Beach, Florida.
Vivian Sheehan, MA, CCC/SLP, is an ASHA Fellow, specializing in stuttering.
She is the Director of the Sheehan Stuttering Center, a Private Practice in Santa Monica,CA.
Dale F. Williams, Ph.D., CCC/SLP, is an Associate Professor at Florida Atlantic
University and Director of the Fluency Clinic there. He holds Specialty Recognition
by ASHA Special Interest Division 4: Fluency and Fluency Disorders.
Peter Dugan, M.Ed, CCC/SLP, is a speech/language pathologist with the Broward CountySchools. He is also an Adjunct Supervisor at Florida Atlantic University Communication Disorders Clinic.
Resources for Stuttering provided by the guest hosts can be found at the bottom of this page.
<Anonymous821> yes, I have difficulty answering phones
<Peter Dugan> I still have trouble with that sometimes
<Anonymous821> what should i do?
<Anonymous821> I don't like to answer it with anyone around
<Dale> For 821: there is desensitization therapy for fears such as the phone.
<Anonymous821> Is it better to offer the information that I stutter?
<Anonymous821> what does it do?
<Anonymous821> I need it....
<Dale> It can help--let's the cat out of the bag, takes the pressure off.
<Peter Dugan> Dale has a good point 821
<Anonymous821> How does that work?
<Vivian Sheehan> 821-- Try undercovering w/ the people that you already know, even
though they know you stutter
<Dale> For 821: Desensitization is a gradual process of removing fear of a stimulus.
<Anonymous821> people don't know that I do
<Vivian Sheehan> 821-- Are you sure no one knows you stutter?
<Anonymous821> yes, just started my job and nobody said anything to me. I try to cover it up.
<Dale> 821, what do you do to cover it up?
<Peter Dugan> 821, one technique we use is to actually stutter on purpose to get
more comfortable with stuttering
<Anonymous821> what would they say anyway if I did?
<Vivian Sheehan> Did you take the job trying to prove that you were fluent?
<Anonymous821> It is not a phone job
<Anonymous821> housekeeping for the state
<Anonymous821> I see the boss everyday though
<Vivian Sheehan> 821-- This does not matter. You still to talk to co-workers and
<Dale> 821- the problem with hiding it is that it gives you short-term success, but long
-term, it creates more problems.
<Anonymous821> yes, I understand
<Anonymous821> I don't like to have people know though
<Dale> You're far better off being open. Do you need to learn how to do that?
<Anonymous821> what should I tell my boss?
Peter Dugan> Why is it so bad if people know?
<Anonymous821> I feel less of a person
<Dale> Would you like to find a therapist in your area that specializes in stuttering?
<Vivian Sheehan> 821- After you stutter on a word comment on it, saying "I sure stuttered
on that." This is a way of putting the stuttering in the open.
<Anonymous821> I can't do that
<Anonymous821> that's the problem
<Anonymous821> I feel that they wouldn't like me
<Vivian Sheehan> Where do you live? I think therapy would be helpful.
<Dale> The SFA web site has a list of therapists. If you want, e me privately & I 'll see if
there's someone I can rec.
<Anonymous821> counseling do you think?
<Anonymous821> yes, I would like that
<Dale> Start with SLP therapy.
<Peter Dugan> Have you ever had therapy before 821?
<Peter Dugan> Did you find it helpful 821?
<Dale> what kinds of things did you do?
<Anonymous821> told me to be open about it
Vivian Sheehan> That is great advice, but hard to do. Be patient with yourself.
<Anonymous821> I stop, pause
<Dale> Yes, let yourself make some mistakes.
<Peter Dugan> Therapy takes time 821
<Anonymous821> I need to go back to it
<Vivian Sheehan> 821-- Try talking to one person about your stuttering, even though it is
someone close to you.
<Anonymous821> I'm hiding
<Anonymous821> my boss perhaps?
Anonymous821> I see him every morning and he gives me my assignment
<Vivian Sheehan> The boss might be the last person you should start with. Try a close
friend or relative.
<Anonymous821> he talks with me but I don't know if he knows
<Anonymous821> so don't tell him?
<Anonymous821> what should i say to the boss?
<Dale> I think she's saying start with someone easier.
<Anonymous821> yes but he needs to know?
<Vivian Sheehan> No. Just don't use him as the first. Practice w/ others until you can
admit to yourself that you stutter.
<Peter Dugan> Who are you comfortable with just talking to ?
<Vivian Sheehan> 821 -- Grandma is good. Start with her.
<Dale> Could you talk to her about this?
<Anonymous821> i will have to call in my attendence at work when i get full time
<Anonymous821> that makes me nervous
<Anonymous821> boss will answer
<Dale> When will that be?
<Anonymous821> what should i do about that?
<Vivian Sheehan> Start making phone calls to people you know well and trust to practice
<Anonymous821> doesn't work
<Vivian Sheehan> What does not work?
<Peter Dugan> Its been my experience that a lot of people in my life have been
sympathetic about my stuttering and nice about it 821
<Anonymous821> calling and praticing on the phone
<Dale> There are some easier ways to practice on the phone, but a therapist shd bring
u thru them.
<Vivian Sheehan> This is the begining of therapy and you need someone to talk to about
how to do it.
<Dale> You need a local SLP.
<Robin> 2943, do you have any questions about stuttering therapy for our panel of
<Anonymous821> yes I know
<Vivian Sheehan>You need to find a therapist in your area.
<Anonymous821> hospital is good?
<Vivian Sheehan> Depends on whether the therapist is a specialist in stuttering.
<Dale> 821--there are listserves devoted to stuttering also that give good info. e me re. this
<Peter Dugan> 821 definitely need someone who specializes in stuttering
<Anonymous821> yes true
<Robin> I have a question for our panel from a final semester SLP grad student who
may not be able to join us later
<Robin> she wanted to know about Effects of Maternal Rate on Fluency in Children
<karla> Does anybody from the panel know about FluencyMaster, and what are your
thoughts about it
<Dale> RE. maternal rate, is that speech rate?
<Robin> I believe so Dale
<Dale> If a kid is susceptible to stuttering, a parent's behavior can allow it to develop. This
is why we often teach parents to reduce their rates.
<Pat> I don't want to intrude on any ongoing conversation, but does anyone here know
anything about Dr. Fluency ?
<Dale> Dr. F will be available on line soon.
<karla> Is that the same thing as Fluency Master?
<Dale> Dr. F is a computerized device made for fluency shaping therapy.
<Anonymous821> Do you stutter Dale?
Dale> yes, I stutter.
<Anonymous821> would i know it?
<Anonymous821> How old are you?
<Anonymous821> 34 here
<Dale> I'm 41 & yes, I think you'd hear it. Peter, Viv, Robin--is it noticeable?
<Robin> Karla, do you treat dysfluent patients?
<karla> Typically I see a patient for Foreign accent reduction and they also stutter
<Dale> Re. the Fluency Master, I've never used one. It's not the same as Dr. Fluency.
<Robin> you can come to the stuttering workshop that Dale, Vivian and Peter are giving
<karla> Dale, thank you for the answer
<karla> I would love to go to workshop but unable to attend
<Peter Dugan> 821 I stutter too
<Dale> There was recently a good discussion of Fluency Master on stutt'l. Try to access the
archives from the Temple web site.
<Vivian Sheehan> 821- Try attending a meeting of the NSA (National Stuttering Assoc.)
in your area. You will hear a lot of stutterers and can compare notes. It is also great
<Anonymous821> How do i find out about that?
<karla> Dale, which web site, I am not familiar w/ that
<Dale> Temple Univ. You can also get there from the Stuttering Home Page (it comes
up on a search).
<Robin> Dale, is that one of the references you gave me?
<Peter Dugan> 821 one of the biggest breakthroughs was getting to the point where I it
doesn't bother me if I stutter
<Robin> Karla, there are some stuttering resources posted on the Forum Message
<Anonymous821> do you care what people think of you?
<Dale> Robin, the Stuttering Home Page is one I gave you.
<Vivian Sheehan> 821- You can contact the NSA at 1-800-364-1677 or look on the
internet for their webiste.
<Robin> Karla, look at that post on the message board
<Dale> 821--sure I care. But I forget stuttering seconds after it happens now.
<karla> Robin, I'll look on the message board
<Peter Dugan> Of course I do but I don't even notice when I stutter any more, If people
don't except my stuttering its their problem !
<Anonymous821> Do you hate yourself after you stutter?
<Dale> Hate myself? Goodness no.
<Anonymous821> I do
<Peter Dugan> No I actually do not notice it
<Dale> I might still be embarrassed now & then, but it passes quickly.
<Vivian Sheehan> 821- hating yourself only keeps the stuttering going. Try to accept
the fact that right now you need to allow your stuttering to be heard.
<Vivian Sheehan> 821 -- Then when you have learned to accept your stuttering you will
more at ease that stutter less.
Anonymous821> yes, hard to accept it
<karla> to the panel, when working w/ a client, and they are not willing to practice
techniques, how do you encourage them to proceed
<karla> this partic. client loved to talk about it, understand it, but not practice easy
onset, prolongations, etc
<Peter Dugan> The goal of therapy isn't so much to stop stuttering but to be able to say
what ever you want when ever you want even if you do stutter
<Vivian Sheehan> Peter --well stated.
<Anonymous821> people look at ya strange though..lol
<Dale> Karla, I explain at great length the cost of not practicing--you don't progress,
you spend more $, etc.
<Peter Dugan> Thanks Vivian
<Vivian Sheehan> Try not to pay attention it others' reaction. They cannot run your life
unless you let them.
<karla> isn't that the truth, however, he wasn't paying for it out of pocket
<Dale> Karla--is this an adult client?
<Peter Dugan> You also might be surprised at the people who would admire you for
having the courage to be open
<karla> yes, ~30 y/o
<karla> overall he got much better, but he could have made more progress
<Dale> Karla--sometimes Clients aren't ready for therapy. They have to be motivated.
<karla> that's true. His supervisor referred him to me.
<Dale> Maybe a support group would be better for him now, if he really likes talking about it
but won't practice.
<Peter Dugan> Karla good point, they have to be ready for therapy
<karla> I referred him to local support group, never showed up
<karla> I did my best for him.
<Dale> Karla, why does he come see you? Looking for a quick fix?
<karla> Yes. I also saw him for foreign accent reduction. 1st worked on stuttering.
<karla> We are actually through. Just wondering if I missed something, could've
<Dale> If he were a kid, I'd say make the tx fun. But an adult should be self-motivated.
<karla> Thats why I also asked about fluency master
<Dale> I'd advise explaining the treatment program in great detail, including why it
won't work w/o practice. If he understands but doesn't practice, he won't progress.
<karla> Thanks for all your input. I will be signing off.
<Dale> Karla--the Fluency Master might give him a quick fix. But for some, it's not lasting.
<karla> thank you Dale
<karla> Have a great seminar. Wish I could be there w/ you
<Vivian Sheehan> 821, Your silence is because you are holding back your stuttering,
hoping that it will go away. Try to talk even if you stutter.
<Anonymous821> nothing will come out
<Dale> If you learn to stutter easily, it would help with that, 821.
<Anonymous821> i need how to control my airflow
<Vivian Sheehan> 821-- You have to adjust to that. You are not letting the sounds out.
Taking responsibility gives you power.
<Anonymous821> i cut my flow off
<Dale> I do that when saying my name.
<Peter Dugan> And to begin to easy stutter you need to be willing to take the risk and
stuttering in front of some one 821
<Anonymous821> I would love to talk more with a crowd of people but I hold back
<Robin> Pat and 2278, are you working with dysfluent clients?
<Dale> They ask, Don't you know your name.
<Vivian Sheehan> Cutting "the flow" is your way of hiding. Be more open and let it out.
What is the wost thing to happen if you stuttered w/ someone you know?
<Dale> When I then tell them I stutter, they feel stupid. And you know what--I'm glad.
<Anonymous821> people say your name is ?
<Vivian Sheehan> Dale -- Good comment!!
<Anonymous821> I want people to like me
<Vivian Sheehan> 821-- At this point tell them that you stutter. Just give me time and I will
say it. Do not apologize for your stuttering.
<Peter Dugan> people will like you even if you stutter and those who don't you don't
want as friends anyway
<Dale> 821--you want people not to make fun of you. That's diff. than liking you.
<Vivian Sheehan> 821-- They will say good things about you when they realize how
strong you are.
<Anonymous821> yes I see your point
<Dale> Do people make fun of my speech behind my back? yes. Do I make fun of their
clothes, hair, speech, etc. Sure.
<Vivian Sheehan> You changed your name legally because you stutter?
<Karen> no, changed it on here..lol
<Karen> so you can see my name
<Vivian Sheehan> O.k. What is your real name? Say it as often as you can for other
people to get over the fear.
<Karen> I don't like it when people make fun of stutterers though
<Karen> Karen is my name
<Vivian Sheehan> We cannot change other people. We can only change ourselves.
<Dale> Karen--when you stutter with a little attitude, people don't make fun of it very
<Karen> I try to be happy, is that what you mean?
<Karen> what do you mean by that exactly?
<Peter Dugan> I think Dale means stuttering and still being confident about yourself
<Dale> What I mean is that when you really don't care what people think it's no fun for
them to make fun of you.
<Karen> yes, hard to do
<Karen> I don't have that confidence
<Karen> I try hard at it
<Peter Dugan> It takes time to make a change like that but its possible
<Dale> It takes time, Karen.
<Dale> Hm. great minds...
<Karen> I try to have a good attitude with people
<Karen> always caring and concerned with people
<Karen> I would like to help people like me in counseling... to become a speech therapist
<Dale> It's good to be caring & concerned, but not over every little imperfection.
<Vivian Sheehan> Karen, you might want to contact the Stuttering Foundation of
America and obtain info and materials to read -- 1-800-992-9392 and they are online
<Karen> is that possible for me you think?
<Karen> yes, have their books
<Dale> ASHA has a site too, with info on becoming an SLP.
<Karen> it's better
<Peter Dugan> I tell my kids at school that to say " Whatever " when they are are in the
moment of stuttering instead of being concerned about what other people might say
<Karen> my parents use to get mad at me
<Karen> for stuttering
<Dale> Told you to SLOW DOWN!!!?
<Karen> said all the wrong things
<Vivian Sheehan> Your wish to become a speech therapist is a great idea. It will take
time, but it will bring a great reward. I have a # of people who have made their
stuttering their goal to become a therapist.
Dale> It's tough on parents--they're told not to deal w/ it, and they have nowhere to
vent their frustrations.
<Dale> Advice is better these days.
<Karen>they said , answer the phone!
<Peter Dugan> They begin to change the way they think about stuttering from this
horrible thing they never want to do some thing that isn't so bad to something they can
<Karen> people need to know how to deal with a stutter
<Karen> some need courses in how to deal with them
<Dale> I say it to clients over & over: You'll get control of it, rather than letting it keep control
<Karen> I just keep quiet if i feel i might stutter
<Karen> this stutter chat is great
<Karen> need to go back to stuttering therapy
<Adrienne> Karen, when were you in therapy?
<Dale> Back to Karen--yes, I think that would be a good idea.
<Karen> for about 6 months ago
<Karen> I quit that, didn't help me out
<Adrienne> maybe it was the technique they tried?
<Dale> Karen--why do you think it didn't work?
<Adrienne> have you tried very many things?
<Karen> they didnt know how to help me....
<Peter Dugan> What were you doing in therapy?
<Karen> I would read to them and they couldn't believe how i was reading
<Karen> thought i did well
<Karen> i need intense therapy
<Adrienne> as in reading helped or hurt?
<Karen> reading was great
<Peter Dugan> or perhaps a different approach
Vivian Sheehan> Karen -- Comment -- there are two groups of stutterers. Some read
better than they talk. Others talk better than read.
<Karen> i did better than i thought i would
<Adrienne> Does reading usually have that difference with stuttering?
<Karen> well, i think talking is easier than reading
<Karen> around people anyway
<Dale> Adrienne--if the stuttering is more word-specific, reading is tough.
<Karen> one on one reading is not too bad
<Karen> crowds are freightening
<Vivian Sheehan> Being lucky "fluent" at a particular time does not change your
stuttering. You still fear the next time.
<Dale> ...if it's more situational, reading is probably OK.
<Peter Dugan> Karen, there are certain conditions where people will be more likely to
be both more fluent and disfluent
<Peter Dugan> Depends on the individual stutter
<Adrienne> Karen, there are many strategies out there for different situations, keep
<Vivian Sheehan> And work with a lot of mistakes and stuttering. It takes time and
<Vivian Sheehan> Karen, Take charge and decide that you are going to make yourself
help you. You are the only one who can.
<Adrienne> challenges are part of life, getting over/through them is great! You can
work at it Karen
<Adrienne> good luck!
<Karen> yes, love to you all
<Robin> bye Karen, good luck!
<Peter Dugan> Good advice
<Karen> thanks for chatting with me
<Vivian Sheehan> Bye karen.
<Adrienne> thanks for coming in Karen :~)
<Karen> i will come back and talk with you again
<Peter Dugan> anytime karen
<Dale> Good luck Karen. E me if you want.
<Vivian Sheehan> Feel free to call me.
<Karen> I will Dale
The National Stuttering Assoc. http://www.nsastutter.org
The Stuttering Foundation of America http://www.stuttersfa.org
The Stuttering Home Page http://www.mankato.msus.edu/depts/comdis/kuster/stutter.html
The British Stammering Association http://www.stammering.org
International Stuttering Awareness Day On-Line Conferences 1998-2000
Suggested readings from our handout:
Conture, E.G. (2001). Stuttering: Its nature, diagnosis, and treatment. Boston: Allyn & Bacon.
Dietrich, S. (2000). Tension control therapy: An integrated approach to treatment. Paper presented at the International Fluency Association World Congress.
Keys & Ruder (1992). A review of commercialized fluency treatment programs. ECHO, 14, 14-17, 21-24.
Kuster, J. et al. (2000). A Picture Is Worth One Thousand Words. Paper presented at the International Stuttering Awareness Day Online Conference. At: http://www.mankato.msus.edu/dept/comdis/ISAD3/isadcon3.
Quesal, R. (1998). What is "successful" stuttering therapy? Paper presented at the International Stuttering Awareness Day Online Conference. At: http://www.mankato.msus.edu/dept/comdis/isad/isadcon.html
Ramig & Bennett (1995). Working with 7- to 12-year-old children...Language, Speech, and Hearing in Schools, 26,138.
Sheehan, J. (1997). Message to a stutterer. Stuttering Home Page. At: http://www.mankato.msus.edu/dept/comdis/kuster/Infostuttering/sheehanmessage.html
Shields, L. (2000). Using the Internet with Children Who Stutter. Paper presented at the International Stuttering Awareness Day Online Conference. At: http://www.mankato.msus.edu/dept/comdis/ISAD3/isadcon3.
Sugarman, M. & Yaruss, J.S. (2000). Use of Helpful Counseling Techniques for Fluency Therapy. Paper presented at the International Stuttering Awareness Day Online Conference. At: http://www.mankato.msus.edu/dept/comdis/ISAD3/isadcon3.html
Van Riper, C. (1973). The Treatment of Stuttering. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall.
Yaruss, J.S. (1998). Describing the consequences?JSLHR, 41, 249.