Make Room For The Stuttering

More To Me Than People See Episode 19

Posted on: August 16, 2010

Episode 19 features Laura San Martin, who grew up in New York but now calls California home. Lori, as she is known to friends, is co-leader for the NSA Chapter in Los Angeles.

I met Lori at this year’s NSA Conference in Cleveland. I participated in a workshop that she and Joseph Diaz co-presented for teens about stuttering fears. Lori used examples from her own life to illustrate how she has learned to cope with fear.

Lori has an interesting story. Stuttering runs in her family, on her mom’s side. Four women in her family share the stuttering experience.

Lori is a civil engineer and she explains what that is for us non-engineers. She also candidly shares how she allowed her speech to somewhat dictate her career choice.

Listen in as we discuss covert stuttering, feelings about stuttering and the importance of having to be ready for therapy in order for it to really work.

We also discuss Sky Diving, which is Lori’s extracurricular passion! She talks about her first jump from the plane (sounds scary just typing it!), and what heightened senses and sensory overload feels like.

I feel so privileged to chat with such diverse women. It gives me goose bumps every time to realize that all that is needed is to ask and women keep telling these wonderful stories. Story-telling is magical.

Feel free to leave comments here on the blog for Lori. Feedback is important. It lets me know you are listening.

Musical credit for this clip of “Fireproof Babies” goes to ccMixter. As always, I use podcast safe music, under Creative Commons license.

5 Responses to "More To Me Than People See Episode 19"

What an amazing podcast again.
Thanks Lori for sharing your amazing story and being honest about the fact that stuttering impacted your career choice , that I feel will apply to a lot of woman , including myself.
Also I totally agree that although I hate flying I’d do that if it meant getting out of making a phonecall, seriously .
Thanks again

Wow, these episodes are really honest. I have not listened to very many, but someone mentioned them to me, so I wanted to check them out. It’s really nice to hear women who stutter talk about stuttering and actually stutter.
I thought it was very honest of Lori to acknowledge that stuttering played a role in what career she landed in.
People probably actually do that, but may not always admit it.

This episode really whetted my appetite to go sky diving even more! The only apprehension I have about it is whether it will feel like riding downhill on a rollercoaster, because I am terrified of rollercoasters, but I have flown (well, co-piloted) a small plane (cessna) and was absolutely fine.

I can relate to wanting to overcome physical discomfort in order to compensate for speaking discomfort; I’m not much of a daredevil, but I do have a reputation for speaking my mind and not caring what people think of me, because when people first meet me, they think I’m shy with low self-esteem. I suppose I have tried to compensate for that by sometimes being overly opinionated or “radical” in my thinking. Also, having piloted a small plane is also a cool thing sometimes to tell people because many fluent people haven’t done that or are afraid to, so in a way it’s like a “one-up”.

Laura, I also like your very calm, almost restrained way of talking. Even though I know excitement is not the only cause of my stuttering (or even a cause at all), I know it plays a factor in how clearly and/or fluently I get my words out. I have always tried (and mostly failed) to talk in a pretty even voice, no matter my emotion, because on the rare occasion where someone does catch me when I am rather without emotion, I am much more fluent, and it surprises both the listener and me.


There is no stomach-in-your-throat feeling that you get on a rollarcoaster when jumping out of a plane. You’d think so, but there’s just not. (Helicopters and hot air balloons, there is some, but not planes). So, there you go- no excuses now 😉

I didn’t notice how calm and almost restrained my voice is until listening to the podcast! It sort of surprised me! I think that IS a combination of me trying not to get excited (because it does agitate my stuttering). But I think part of it is just my personality. Thinking back to home videos as a kid, I think I’ve always had that style of speech. I can get much more animated around those who I know well. But I was a bit surprised to hear it; but I liked the sound of it… although I think maybe a little more inflection in the voice would have made the podcast more interesting… something to remember for public speaking.

I only met Lori after the nSA conference but she has been terrific to talk to about stuttering. It’s wonderful to know so many of us share covert stuttering experiences. Thanks Lori for doing the podcast. You sound great.

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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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