Inclusion for us who stutter
Written by Alejandro
When I was at school I had to go through very complicated moments related to my stuttering. Before the age of 16 I was diagnosticated with depression: I had fears, anxiety, didn’t value myself, had avoidance strategies, and so on. I remember that oral presentations in class makes me suffer, because I used to hate the blocks while talking that didn’t let me finish my sentences.
However, most of the teachers were understanding. And, even if in some occasions other students used to made fun of my speech, I could say that I had good friends. Also, I was very lucky because I received support from professionals that helped me to eliminate the avoidance behaviors that used to limit my day-to-day life.
Particularly, my journey to accept my stuttering started at the beginning of 2018, when I began to change the ideas I had about stuttering and stopped seeing it as something bad. From that moment, I began to give talks promoting the message of awareness and normalization in national and international events for schools, universities and stuttering organizations. That helped me not only in my acceptance process, but also to contribute to future generations to not have the same experiences that I had.
I firmly believe that we need an inclusive and diverse world. All of us have the same rights as anyone else, so the characteristics we have shouldn’t be a reason for being discriminated. Fortunately, this reality is starting to change thanks to the associations and professionals that work trying to make a friendly-world for all of us.
As a person who stutters, I see that in Spain many things are being achieved in this area. Professionals who work in stuttering are very involved in training new students and they are very active in social networks, sharing articles and facts about stuttering. Also, we have a Spanish Stuttering Foundation dedicated to spread awareness in all the country. However, there are still many more things to do. I’m doing as much as I can and I invited others to join us on this. As Eduardo Galeano says: “Many small people, in small places, doing small things, can change the world”.