I started to stutter at an early age. Over time my stuttering got worse without realizing the burden that I would bear thirty years later.
At this time, the severity of my stuttering was ignored by my family and by society. It was very difficult to overcome this burden. So I found myself alone, affected by stuttering with my childhood friends and in class. My classmates did not tolerate my stuttering and I could not make myself understood. I could not speak and it was difficult to live. Worse, I was the object of mockery and imitation so I could not fully participate in games and in class. The teacher did not know that stuttering was a handicap, for people who stutter (PWS), and also ignored the negative consequences suffered by me. Therefore, everyone in my school as well as my family disregarded the burden of my stuttering.
Thus when I started to stutter, my family shouted at me to stop stuttering. That made my stuttering worse.. In my heart I had trouble understanding why I was the object of mockery and provocation, by my friends, because of my stuttering. I used many remedies to try to stop stuttering. I used traditional local practices which included: a slap with a shoe, drinking water, washing utensils, drinking a combination of traditional plants, throwing eggs on my face when I started to stutter. Despite all attempts at treatment, nothing changed and my stuttering persisted.
With the advent of the Internet in Mali, I decided to do some research on modern methods of treatment and to understand more about the different types of stuttering through the website of the French National Stuttering Association www.begaiement.org. This research gave me a lot of satisfaction, hope and courage to fight against my stutter.
So I joined the association Overcoming Stuttering created by Ms. Diallo in 2005 to better cope with the handicap of stuttering and help others, especially my fellow stutterers. Within this association I became a leader in the fight against stuttering in Mali. Today we manage to help a lot of people and children who stutter and remove the isolation and demystify stuttering in Mali.
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