Hello this is a post that I have been meaning to make for a while!
I’m Kim and I was born with apraxia of speech! It gave me a severe speech impediment for most of my childhood and speech therapy has now mostly lessened it so it sounds like an accent. I’m mainly saying this so you guys know I’m qualified to talk about this!
So yeah here are some tips:
- If you are having trouble understanding a few words someone is saying, don’t hesitate to ask them to repeat it or rephrase it if it’s something that would be easy for them to do (i.e. if they had severe stutter that made saying sentences difficult).
- Don’t try to teach them how to say words or sounds correctly. It’s annoying and it also implies that it’s really easy for them to get over their speech impediment. (It isn’t.)
- Don’t act awkwardly or apologetic around someone when you find out they have a speech impediment. It’s just another part of the person.
- Treat them with respect like you would any other person. Don’t taunt them or tease them about it.
Also BE PATIENT if they’re having trouble with a word or whatever. It’s just discouraging to be trying to talk and others are talking over you because they can’t wait a few more seconds for you to get a word out. If they look like they want help or ask for your help to figure out a word, okay.
But as someone with a stutter, unless I know you well, when someone speaks over me when I’m stuttering, I feel like I’m not worth your time for a conversation, so there’s not any reason for me to keep talking anyways.