What NOT to do as an SLP?

Hello my name is Saidee Solano I am a senior at California State University Fullerton. In one of my classes we recently had some guest speakers who were PWS, I noticed that several of them said that their speech therapy experience was aversive. As an aspiring SLP I would like to know what are some of the things that can make speech therapy a negative experience?

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What NOT to do as an SLP? — 4 Comments

  1. Hi

    In my experience, some of the things that made my therapy really negative include things like sitting across from me and counting my stutters. Not even looking up at me – it made me feel like a piece of data, a non-person there just to help the SLP fulfill a class requirement.

    I also didn’t like having to read infantile pieces aloud. I remember the rainbow passage. It felt silly as I would say it. It was sing-songy. I absolutely hated it. I asked if she absolutely needed for a reading to occur, could she get something age appropriate. She said no – that it was standard that all clients use the same reading sample.

    Throughout, again, I just felt like the sample to work on and collect data for the class assignment.


    • Hi Pam, it really surprises me that people can be in the field of Speech Language Pathology and have such a lack of empathy. I know I cannot be a perfect SLP in the future but I really want to be as conscious as I can. The job can require a lot of data but the client should always be priority. Thank you for sharing, sorry you had some negative experiences. I feel like there is no substitute for firsthand experience so I appreciate the insight, I will be sure to learn from it and keep these in mind in the future.

      Saidee Solano

  2. Hi Saidee,

    I’m going to attempt to answer your question by providing a story on what TO DO as an SLP. Have you ever read David Shapiro’s personal story entitled “A Way Through the Forest: One Boy’s Story With a Happy Ending”? It’s available here: https://www.mnsu.edu/comdis/kuster/PWSspeak/shapiro.html.

    There is so much you can glean from this story, but it highlights the importance of client-centered treatment – meeting them where they are, empowering them to talk freely, and really listening to them (their interests, wants, desires, needs, aspirations). There is so much value in being heard and understood!

    Ana Paula

    • Hi Ana,
      Thank you so much for sharing that story! That is the kind of story that should be displayed in every speech clinic. I like how it shows the importance of avoiding negative language. This story is filled with the reminders of all the rewards big and small that can be accomplished through speech therapy. Thank you for sharing.

      Warm regards,
      Saidee Solano