A stutter adds work to your life: the work of saying things, and the work of calming other people down while you say them. Mine is a "moderately severe" stutter according to one doctor. The bad part of having a stutter is not its effect on me, which is slight, but its effect on other people, which sometimes is dramatic. Here, you will find strategies for living with a congenital or a long term stutter — strategies that I have found useful, but take them or leave them.Basic Strategies
Well, you have a stutter, and probably, that is that. But when you have something to say, pipe up, and stutter as much as you need to. As you stutter, keep a straight face, do not twitch or do anything goofy, and be forthright and friendly. This requires practice, especially the being friendly part. The more you talk and stutter, the more manageable your stutter will be.Word substitution
Don't do it. Once you start to say a word, stick with it. You look funny — the bad kind of funny — when you repeatedly stutter out the first syllable of a word, then shift abruptly to another word that is, at the moment, easier to say. If you shift words you look indecisive or comical. Use correct diction. Substituting slightly incorrect words, for correct words on which you would stutter, convinces people you are weird. Do not use exalted vocabulary, even if "proboscis" comes more easily than "nose," which it might, but you get the point.
Twitching and wiggling
If you have to wiggle some part of you to get a word out, make it your toe inside your shoe. Do not bob up and down. Do not wiggle your foot, your knee, your butt, or anything. Many stutterers engage in bodily movements when commencing speech — pushing out words with a twitch or a bob. On that note …
Don't develop behaviors to mitigate or disguise your
Sometimes you will discover behaviors that help you get through a blocked word: clearing your throat, clicking your tongue, whatever. But you look weirder standing there clucking like a chicken and stuttering, than you do just stuttering. Auxiliary behaviors are a difficult aspect of stuttering, because of course you want to be fluent, and these behaviors can make talking a little easier. Probably the behaviors will not be effective all of the time. And their weirdness may soon obscure their utility.
Some speech therapists tell stutterers to look people in the face while stuttering, but I say go
Continue reading all of Guerrilla Stutterer on Eric Bourland's blog