Episode #186. You’re 10 years old, you stutter, and the first day of school is approaching. You’re thinking about the negative reactions the other kids in your new class will have towards your stuttering. You’re afraid of being teased, bullied, and not making any friends. So what do you do? You create a poster about stuttering and present it to your class! This is what 10 year old Natalie from the U.S.A. did recently. On this episode, I speak with her and her mother, Regina, about the stuttering awareness poster that Natalie made and the results from talking to her class about her stuttering.

I also talk about several events in honour of International Stuttering Awareness Day: the special awareness comic I made starring Franky Banky, giving a speech in French in Montreal and hanging out with francophone stutterers at the Association des Bègues du Canada, and interviewing attendees of the Canadian Stuttering Association one day event. October was a very busy month!

Speaking of French speeches, I play audio submitted by Audrey Bigras, author of The bilingual Advertising Stories blog. She talks about 10 stuttering myths in French to help me practice my French in preparation for my speech in Montreal. The stuttering myths are as follows:

1. Le bégaiement est causé par la timidité (Shyness causes stuttering)

2. Le bégaiement est causé par un évènement traumatisant qui a eu lieu durant l’enfance (Stuttering is caused by a fearful event that happened in the childhood)

3. Lorsqu’on chante, on ne bégaie pas (We don’t stutter while we sing)

4. Tout le monde bégaie! Par exemple, quand je suis fatigué ou stressé, je bafouille et je cherche mes mots – dit par une personne fluide (Everybody stutters! When I am tired or nervous, I stutter! – said by a fluent person)

5. Les personnes qui bégaient ont de la difficulté à dire leur prénom (People who stutter stuggles when they have to say their own name)

6. Le bégaiement est de la faute des parents ou de la famille (Stuttering is parents or family’s fault)

7. On peut éliminer le bégaiement avec un régime alimentaire précis (We could eradicate stuttering with a special diet)

8. On peut arrêter de bégayer en changeant de latéralité (We could stop stuttering by changing our laterality)

9. Il existe des chirurgies de la langue pour vaincre le bégaiement (A surgery of the tongue could eradicate stuttering)

10. Le bégaiement garantit une vie misérable (Stuttering causes a life of misery)

Links mentioned on this episode: