Make Room For The Stuttering

Fun With Stuttering

Posted on: August 4, 2016

I have recently listened to podcasts (besides my own, who knew?) where people have suggested that we can have fun with our stuttering. Micheal Kidd-Gilchrist, a NBA basketball player with the Charlotte Hornets, was recently on a sports podcast where he talked about having fun with his stuttering.

And Chris Constantino, a host with the StutterTalk podcast recently talked about having fun with our stuttering and seeing if we could make stuttering a pleasurable experience.

I have thought of stuttering in terms of making it a positive rather than a negative – “I’m stuttering well today” – but have never really thought about how it can be fun or pleasurable. That takes re-framing from a negative to a positive to a whole new place. A place that many people may not be at in their journey with stuttering.

I brought this idea of having fun with stuttering up at a recent discussion on Stutter Social. It was met with mixed results. Some people were intrigued by the novelty of the concept, as it really is the opposite of what people think about stuttering. One person was willing to explore out loud what it’s like when he makes fun of his stuttering. He mentioned that when he reaches that point, that he can poke fun at his stuttering, then he might not really stutter anymore.

Several people indicated that they could not imagine at all having fun with stuttering. They mentioned the negativity they feel when they stutter and how they wind up feeling depressed during and after long periods of stuttering.

I have been more conscious lately of smiling when I am in a stuttered moment. Whether it be a string of repetitions or a block, I try to remember to smile while I am stuttering. That may not be the same as having fun with it, but it makes me feel better to smile during the moment and I’m pretty sure it helps the listener to remain comfortable and present until I finish.

I am going to challenge myself to play with my stuttering and see what happens when I think about how the repetitions feel as they roll off my tongue and what the sensation of the block feels like. I am far from feeling that getting stuck in a block can be pleasurable, but I get where Constantino is coming from. Anything that we produce – and we produce sounds and words – should be valued as ours, as creative, as something positive.

What do you think of this idea of having fun with your stuttering? What does it feel like when you block? Can you make that a pleasurable experience?

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2 Responses to "Fun With Stuttering"

Hi Pam, its been a while my two kids keep me so busy plus I am finally back in the workforce.

Mmm I am working on getting comfortable with looking in people’s eyes when I stutter and so far the result us very positive as I feel I am getting more and more comfortable with my stuttering. Having fun with my stuttering might be a bit of a stretch for me right now but I love a challenge. What can I do really to have fun with my stuttering. Maybe if I know I can begin to experiment.

Hi Annetta – yes, it’s been a while since I’ve seen you on the blog. Welcome back and thanks for leaving a comment. I’m not sure what people might think of as fun with their stuttering, but I’m thinking of being aware of how it feels when we are in a block. Instead of feeling tension that becomes uncomfortable, maybe we could feel the muscles in our shoulder and chest move and delight in the fact that they move in a certain way when we are blocking/stuttering. Maybe when we are repeating a word or syllable, we can enjoy how the words roll off our tongue and again, think of the experience positively rather than our “go to” negative thinking. And consciously being aware of smiling when we are stuttering helps to make it a less unpleasant experience. Let me know if you come up with other thoughts around this.

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