February 12, 2013

Stammering Bullying - How I Reacted

I am sure that each and every person that has a stammer has different experiences with regards to bullying due to having this form of speech impediment. I am often asked as to how people reacted to my stammer and how I attempted to deal with any form of “mickey taking”.

To start with I would like to say that I doubt whether I had as hard a time as many of the people that I have helped or spoken to since I have started to offer speech therapy for stammering. In a way I was quite fortunate to have been heavily involved in many of the sporting teams at school such as the cricket and football squads. This helped me to gain a large number of very good friends, friends who would often support me during the tough times.

When people did bully me I would always try my best to simply walk away. I would also make out that it did not bother me and would even laugh with them. This was far from easy to do of course.

“How are you Sssssteve?”

Very funny (not) and very hard to just ignore the above type of question when people are mocking the stammer, but what was the alternative? I am certainly not the type of person to retaliate in a violent manner and I never have been. But believe me, I have been tempted to punch people on many an occasion.

At this point you may well think that I was in some kind of control of my emotions and that I coped well with having a stammer. But you would be wrong. I am more than happy to admit that there were many a time when I would return home after school and would have a good old cry. It was my way of releasing the frustration and tension.

I left school at the earliest possible age due to the stammer and due to the bullying – in fact I could not wait to leave. There was absolutely no way I was going to stay on to do A-Levels despite the fact that I knew that I should, career wise. I just had to get away from some of these classmates.

As I continued into adult life I continued to turn the other cheek when anyone laughed at the stammer or tried to bully me. But I was like a bomb that was ready to explode and this is just one of the reasons why I needed to find a solution to the speech impediment as quickly as possible.

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