Speech and language therapy or any traditional treatments for stuttering is probably the first treatment alternative we choose to go with when it comes to eliminating our stuttering problem. Most of us (me included) start this “the journey of hope to get rid off stuttering” with speech and language therapy. It might be a private SLP(Speech Language Pathologist), a well known speech therapy program or a speech therapy clinic in our city or university. In my case, I tried ALL of them with either NO or TEMPORARY results.
To be honest I never heard a PWS telling me “I went through speech therapy when I was on my twenties for the first time and I overcame my stuttering”.
Is this a coincidence?
I don’t think so.
Does that mean speech and language therapy sucks and has no value?
No, that isn’t the case either.
So, what is it?
Why does that happen? After all, speech and language therapy has been around for years and the sessions are held by professional speech and language therapists.
The reason is one of the below… if not both.
1- The specific speech and language therapy program you chose to attend was not good enough.
The traditional speech therapy techniques and applications might be very similar in general but your speech and language pathologist and his/her skills are critical and plays a huge role in your success when it comes to achieving your desired outcome.
You and your stuttering iceberg need to be ANALYZED and UNDERSTOOD very well. If you don’t feel understood and instead you feel more like a “one fits all” straight forward approach are being used on you, then there is a high chance that you’d lose interest in the program and you stop believing that he/she can help you.
What I am trying to say here is that the name “speech and language therapy” should NOT be enough for you to make a decision. WHO you are going to work with and whether they involve the psychological aspect of stuttering in the stuttering treatment or not are extremely IMPORTANT factors which you should definitely take into consideration before you make a decision.
2- You simply were not ready for the change.
It might not be the right time for you… or the way you approach the problem may not be right… meaning it is not supporting the effective use of those speaking techniques.
This is mainly about the MENTAL side of the equation and it is closely related to the inner game of stuttering. Before going through speech and language therapy or any traditional treatments for stuttering, your expectations should be set right and realistically.
One of the WORST mistakes we make is going through a speech therapy program with the expectation of curing our stutter in a very short period of time by learning traditional speech therapy tools and techniques. You might think that those physical techniques are the solutions which will bring you fluency the next day, but in reality they are only tools which will help you to take YOURSELF to fluency.
I can hear you saying;
“OK Chazzler, I understand that those are the possible reasons…
but then tell me what to DO about it”
Here are some tips and advices for you…
–> Do your RESEARCH. If possible, go through a free consultation to meet your speech and language therapist before deciding on anything.
–> Make sure you are in the right MINDSET and you set your expectations and goals right… in a “smart” way!
–> Ask yourself if you are READY to make a CHANGE in your life. If you don’t have strong reasons to make it happen for you, then you’ll probably will not be able to experience positive permanent results no matter how effective the techniques are.
–> And last but not least, I strongly suggest you to learn about the inner game of stuttering before shooting for any speaking tools and techniques.
One last point is…
Research and get familiar with other solution alternatives on the market today.
Especially now that there are A LOT of those.
You may want to consider them either in CONJUNCTION with your speech and language therapy sessions or just independently as a solution alternative which will take you to your ultimate goal.
…and you might be asking…
What are the most popular solution alternatives on the market today and how do I choose one so I can make sure it’ll meet my needs and expectations so I won’t end up going through all those frustration when I realized it didn’t work again?!
… and I think I may have an answer below to your question.