Best Way to be an Advocate?


We are 2nd year MSP students at the University of South Carolina.  We are currently taking a course on stuttering, and during that course we had a guest speaker who spoke about how hard his childhood was due to bullying, by both students and a teacher.  We read Stuttering Teaches Resilience by Ian Mahler on this website, and he too wrote about how he has blocked out parts of his childhood because it was so traumatic.  After spending more time learning about stuttering and fluency disorders, it seems teasing and a bullying are a very common theme.  As soon to be professionals, what would be the best way we could advocate for our students who stutter?  Do you have any ideas as what we as SLP’s could do to make school a more welcoming and enjoyable place for PWS?

Thank you,

Sarah Williamson, Elizabeth Winn, and Maggie Wright

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Best Way to be an Advocate? — 2 Comments

  1. Hello Sarah, Elizabeth, and Maggie,
    One of the best ways to advocate for your client who stutters is to work with that client to make a class presentation on stuttering. It would be ideal if your client wanted to help you give the presentation, but if not, it would be great to get your client’s permission to give the presentation. Presentations like this can start with stuttering “facts,” but end with a section on bullying and teasing. It is quite empowering to educate classmates. You can also work to help find your client a friend who will be there for him or her. Someone your client can sit next to at lunch, hang out with at recess, will be very helpful. I’m glad you read Ian Mahler’s post about resilience; do check out Elizabeth Wislar and Hope Gerlach’s post about advocacy, too.
    Hope this helps, and kind regards,

    • Dear Jean,
      Thank you so much for your response! This is great information that we will take with us when we begin our CFY next fall. We will also be sure to read the posts about advocacy as well. Thank you again!