My name is Yuna. I was born and raised in Mongolia, but I live in Virginia now, where I’m pursuing my dreams. I have a degree in Computer Science. I enjoy learning, and I’m taking an intense Philosophy course right now. I began stuttering at age 5, and I stuttered to as much as 80% of my words on the phone and to groups and even 50% with my own family. I had mainly blocks but I found myself doing body twitching and making some faces that had to look weird.
I spent around SIX years in speech therapy programs and had private sessions with multiple SLP’s. These therapists were very nice and kind and their suggestions helped, but they didn’t help me stop stuttering, especially under pressure. I don’t want to spend my life stuttering or avoiding talking altogether, as I have done many times and as so many do.
In 2020, I found one of Lee Lovett’s stuttering-books and I loved it. I studied it hard and began applying what he said, and it began helping me. I did the reading aloud, the mind training daily and used some of his Crutches. My speech improved a lot, but it wasn’t where I wanted it. In 2022, I read his latest stuttering book. It was even better, and my speech kept improving.
In January of 2023, Coach Lee, as we call him, put a post in Facebook offering free coaching again, which he does when he has openings in his schedules. I emailed him immediately and lucked out. He took me. We started Skyping. I think that we’ve done four sessions so far, all no charge, as he offered. I was already applying what I could from his latest and best stuttering book, How to Stop Stuttering & Love Speaking, and it was so helpful. As I read it, I applied what it said as best I could and every week my speech improved.
So, yes, since I finished that book three months ago I haven’t had a “bad incident”, which is what he calls speech that any fluent stranger would call stuttering. So, that’s the test. I just haven’t had any bad incidents in three months. If you want to hear me speak, go here: https://youtu.be/-E8DqLKNHMs.
I still have serious fears of speaking on the phone and to groups, and this is a problem, as I tend to avoid speaking under pressure, which Coach Lee does not want me to do. Fear, he says, is NOT stuttering, and we can beat it by gradually increasing our exposure to speaking in situations we view as pressured. So, I’m still working on beating fear.
I wish that I could attend WSSA’s SAM Meetings on Saturday’s, but I work then. Coach Lee has urged me to join Toastmasters and start speaking there as much as I can.
I love World Stop Stuttering Association and its stop stuttering program and services. I plan to join some Practice Groups soon as well. It’s great to have a whole community of ex-stutterers explaining how they beat it and helping the rest of us. I’m so glad to be joining that group. WSSA is a lifetime community for anyone who stutters or used to.
I look forward to the day that I can say as Lee does, “I converted stuttering into a blessing in my life.” I believe I can achieve that if I stay on WSSA’s program. The more we read aloud and talk when stutter free the easier pressured speech becomes. We still use a crutch or a speech plan when needed, which is less and less, but we never quit doing the daily mind training.
My advice to other PWS is to study Lee’s books and take advantage of World Stop Stuttering Association. Most PWS are now routinely proving that they can stop stuttering. So why not?
As I said I’m not finished yet. I still have to overcome fear of speech and teach myself to love to speak, and I plan to stay on this program until I do, and I can say I converted stuttering into a blessing. Even after that, I plan to be active in WSSA. Maybe I can help some other PWS.
I’ll never be able to thank Coach Lee and WSSA enough for all their help, most of which is free or close to it. They are saving the world’s stutterers one by one.
Yuna, Mongolia/Virginia, March 2023