Stuttering isn’t a mental health condition, but it can have a big impact on the ability to manage the condition and move forward.
Confidence is a big factor in that regard, but mental blocks can get in the way of that.
Adults who stutter have often experienced some kind of trauma in childhood.
Even with an early diagnosis, a child has been labeled, so being different can have long-lasting effects.
Left untreated, stuttering can progress or set forth behaviors that persist into adulthood — like not going for help.
Adults who could benefit from speech therapy often hesitate to try it. They can’t get past the feeling that nothing will help. So the cycle of stress and anxiety continues, and some simply give up on trying to communicate.
Instead, they’ll cope by pointing at a menu, writing on paper, or deferring speech to someone else.
Those who do try to communicate often run into more frustration. They find that people complete their sentences, pity them, or dismiss them with impatience.
All of this can deflate a person who stutters.
Getting Help and Building Confidence
So it’s easy for people who stutter to feel sorry for themselves when their speech is less than perfect.
But if you think about it, no one is perfect, and every one is unique. So what can people who stutter do?
One big step is to dig deep and find a way to accept their stutter. The next is to consider therapy.
A good therapist can help a person who stutters realize that sometimes the only thing holding them back is what’s inside.
Together, they can work on dispelling the thoughts and beliefs that prevent speech therapy and other treatments from being effective, and that can result in more confidence — and improved fluency.
Read about a chance encounter with a boy and the honesty of a therapist that led to a breakthrough for a man who stutters: