Flexible Rate Demo – Iceberg Analogy
Updated: Jun 22, 2022
Flexible Rate Demonstration
An Iceberg Approach to Stuttering Therapy
I’ve decided to take the flexible rate video down. I know some have found it helpful to see a fluency strategy in action, but it’s not where I’m focusing my work with people who stutter / stutterers. Very often, when people view demonstrations of “fluency techniques” their focus is on how to use or teach them. It places a higher value on “fluency” (i.e. not stuttering) in stuttering therapy. There’s nothing wrong with fluency / not stuttering and I, like most anyone else who stutters, really enjoy and appreciate my ease of speech (notice I didn’t say fluency…). Being fluent isn’t what’s important. Accepting yourself the way you are is important. Saying what you want when you want, regardless of stuttering is important. Not being silenced because you stutter is important. Living your life to the fullest is important.
Does this mean I don’t help people change the way the stutter, absolutely that can be a part of stuttering therapy, but the goal is to stutter more easily, not to be fluent.
I incorporate Joseph Sheehan’s (Sheehan, Joseph G. (1970.) STUTTERING: Research and Therapy. Harper and Row. NY) iceberg analogy of stuttering into my approach to stuttering therapy. 90% of what stutterer’s experience is under the surface, the denial, fear, shame, embarrassment, hopelessness, helplessness, isolation, etc. 10% is above the surface. It’s the stuff we see. It’s the blocks, the repetitions, the prolongations, the struggle, the head movements, etc. Generally speaking, 90% of my work is focused on what’s under the surface. 10% is focused on what’s above, helping them shift over to the right side where the stuttering is still present, ideally with less struggle and tension, but under the surface is acceptance, community, courage, hope, pride and often a whole lot more happiness.