Make Room For The Stuttering

May I H-H-H-Help You?

Posted on: January 24, 2010

It has happened all week. Every time I have answered the front desk phones, I have stuttered on the word “help”. Every time. It is usually an easy, relaxed double or triple repetition of the “h”. No other word, just that one. And I knew I would stutter on it each time.

It hasn’t bothered me too much, because no one on the other end of the phone has reacted in any way. It has just been a little blip. But what has bothered me has been when anyone from the office has heard me stutter or someone walked by when I was on the phone and waved or something, at the exact minute I stuttered. That made me feel self-conscious. I am not sure why – it just has.

I found myself actually trying to use a speech target a couple of times. Can you believe it? I was feeling so self-conscious about it that I intentionally tried to slow down before saying “help” or gently trying to slide into the “h”. Nope – didn’t work! All week it has been “h-h-help”.

I just answered the phone now and did the usual, “May I h-help you?” I found myself rolling my eyes at myself. And I surprised myself doing that. Why has it bothered me all week? Who cares? I shouldn’t. But I do.

It is part of human nature to be aware of doing something we wish we didn’t, whether we have control over it or not. Most of the time, I am pretty OK with my stuttering, but I did find myself wishing that I didn’t answer the phone like this EVERY time this week. I did briefly think of changing what I should say, to drop the dreaded “h” sound, but quickly decided against that.

I am not going to do that. Then I wouldn’t be saying what I want or need to say. And thats what it is all about, right?

What do you think? Do you still find yourself feeling self-conscious sometimes, foolishly? What kind of conversation do you have with your self when this happens? Please share your thoughts.

1 Response to "May I H-H-H-Help You?"

I feel selfconcious most of the time sadly and i usually say to myself, ‘cpme on girl’ get over yourself, its time you pull it together. Needless to say that just does not help and I am left feeling totally helpless and bewildered.

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© Pamela A Mertz and Make Room For The Stuttering, 2009 - 2022. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Pamela A Mertz and Make Room For The Stuttering with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. Same protection applies to the podcasts linked to this blog, "Women Who Stutter: Our Stories" and "He Stutters: She Asks Him." Please give credit to owner/author Pamela A Mertz 2022.
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