Reply – Re: Speech Therapy
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Re: Speech Therapy
— by Brooke Leiman Brooke Leiman
Kaz-

Your honest account of your speech therapy experience probably rings true for many many people who stutter out there.  I can't blame you for having a bad taste in your mouth about speech therapy.  There are plenty of speech programs and speech therapists out there that most definitely do push speech modification techniques.  I wish I could argue with you on behalf of my profession, but I can't because you're right!  All I can say is there are also plenty of speech pathologists that DO share your sentiments and measure progress not by how many fluent syllables that person has but rather by how often the client is saying exactly WHAT they want to say WHEN they want to say it, whether or not they stutter.  I assure you we are working to educate speech pathologists on the dangers of "chasing fluency" and the role we, as speech pathologists, may play in encouraging that chase (even if we don't mean to).  As I encounter speech therapists that are providing therapy that only works on speech fluency, I will be directing them to this forum (and forums like this), in hopes that hearing your first-hand experiences will open their eyes.  

If you're interested, I have included a link on the bottom of this post to an article that I have often share with parents/families of my clients and speech therapists on how to help develop healthy communication attitudes for their children. I'm wondering your thoughts on it and do you think it would have been helpful had you or your parents/family been educated on this line of thinking when you were young.  I hope that this article further demonstrates that although we may not share the exact same views on stuttering and stuttering therapy, I think you'll see there are many parallels.  

http://www.marshall.edu/cohp/assets/documents/HealthyAttitudes.pdf