The impact of words

The article's author, Louise Kelly

To coincide with our campaign 'Find The Right Words', Louise Kelly talks about the power of words and their impact on her.

From roughly the age of 8 I was bullied till about the age of 12. One laugh or one word can be the most powerful thing. 

The simple word 'yes' brings back the worst memories — it should be just a simple word! But back then I couldn’t say it. I was laughed at, mocked and bullied;  even teachers belittled me. I never understood why the adults in my life joined in most days. 'Disabled', 'slow'-and 'annoying' are words that I've had said to me and it really did affect my life.

'Is there a cure for stammering?' 'Is there a fix?' Why should there be? Why do I need to be perfect? Why do we always need to fix something? Everyone is better being unique than the same! 

'Why do you speak like that?': not a word but a sentence that makes me think negatively because… why can't I stammer? Why can't I speak like this? I'm forever changing my sentences as I know I'll block, when instead I should be saying everything without worrying.

Many people assume I am 'broken' when I block, which makes me feel even worse and that I should just stop talking forever. 

I think 'different' is another negative word; wouldn't life be boring if we were all the same? Is it not good to be different and be unique? 

Many people assume I am 'broken' when I block, which makes me feel even worse and that I should just stop talking forever. 

I might stammer but my stammer is not me. People will always state things that I can't change due to my stammer and then even mock it sometimes and I always wonder what would they do in my shoes? People enjoy laughing and making a joke until the joke is about them. 

Stammering is perceived as such a negative thing in society. We need to speak more about stammering — the more people understand it and know which famous people have or had a stammer, the more positivity it will bring.
 

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