Poem: 'Stammering is me'

By Beth Watson

I have a neurological disorder
It's called a stammer
Yes you heard that right
It's caused by a 'hiccup' in the brain

It's not a sign of low intelligence
It does not mean I am shy or nervous in character
If emotional factors caused stammering we would all stammer
I have a stammer, I am human

Please do not mimic my stammer
Please do not bully me for being me
My stammer does not need to be 'fixed' or 'cured'
It is your assumptions and numerous thoughtless responses which need to change

My stammer may appear 'mild' at times
But you have no idea what my internal monologue endures every day
I am proud of my stammer, however I am not proud of the stigma in this world that comes with it

I am not incompetent 
I am not weak
I am not untrustworthy
I am not unsure of what I am saying
I do not forget my name
I am in fact fighting a daily battle with my speech and trying to wade through the stigma, misconceptions and thoughtless responses every day

Stammering is real
Stammering is me
It is who I am, I have a voice
I am proud of my stammer, my bravery and my varying degrees of success, but why can't you open your eyes to my hourly, daily and weekly battles?

Beth adds, "I have also done a YouTube video surrounding my story and I read out my stammering poem too. My main message is 'Only you can change your life'. You can watch my video below:

Two women in running outfits holding flags and looking at the camera
Tayo & Bhupinder
A speaker on stage at STAMMAFest 2023

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