Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

'It's Not Just about Sounding Fluent, It's about All the Feelings That Go with It Too'

Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

'It's Not Just about Sounding Fluent, It's about All the Feelings That Go with It Too'

Article excerpt

RACHEL Purcell is an NHS speech and language therapist affiliated to the University of Manchester.

She too grew up with a stammer, as did her father, and has spent 18 years working with people with the condition.

Rachel said: "Most people who seek therapy and support have experience of avoiding speaking and trying to 'cover up' their stammer.

"This can lead to feelings of shame and embarrassment and it becomes a vicious circle - 'I can't speak because then they'll know I stammer'.

"It's not unusual to work with people who hardly ever, if at all, openly discuss their stammer with anyone, including their spouses and parents.

"At its most severe, I've met people who avoid all sorts of situations and end up in jobs they don't like or are too fearful of starting relationships and getting too close to someone.

"It can have a profound effect - it's not just about sounding fluent, it's about all the feelings which go with stammering. …

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