A Message To Society, From A Stuttering Stanley

A post written and submitted by Firdaus Rahim.

Ever since I learned how to talk, I’ve always been a joke to almost everyone I know. I guess it is kind of funny, that’s why they would always laugh at the way I speak. I mean who wouldn’t, right? Especially if you’re a stuttering Stanley.

I’ve always hated that name. Being called by that name is like having a label plastered on my forehead. A constant reminder that I’m a joke to others. Never to be taken seriously because I don’t sound ‘commanding’ enough. Who would, to be honest? Would anyone on this planet listen to someone who can’t even get a sentence straight out of his mouth without straining his neck or looking like he’s about to get a stroke? So, I learned to silence my opinions.


Never to be taken seriously because I don’t sound ‘commanding’ enough.


Some days it feels like it’s an actual monster and I’m being held captive by it. No matter how much I’ve tried to act ‘normal’, “it” comes out the moment I open my mouth and the next thing I hear is a chuckle, a giggle… The next thing I see are people masking their faces with a concerned look (as if they actually care to know why I speak like this). So I learned how to put on a show and pretend that everything is ‘okay’.

telegraph.co.uk

The most common thing I get asked by people is, “Are you nervous?”

No, it’s just-

“But why do you have problems communicating then? You don’t need to feel afraid or intimidated by me… alright?”

Oh alright, thank you… I won’t.

What you’ve just read is a common conversation I would encounter. IF I was really upfront with people the conversation would go something like this:

“Are you nervous?”

No, it’s just that I stutter. I was BORN like this. You can still understand whatever that comes out from my freaking mouth.

“But why do you have problems communicating then? You don’t need to feel afraid or intimidated by me… alright?”

Afraid? Intimidated? Listen here, you twat. I am not ‘afraid’ or ‘intimidated’ by you… or by anyone else for that matter. My stuttering has nothing to do with my self-esteem or anything else, this is just how I talk. I was born like this and there’s nothing wrong with me.


I was born like this and there’s nothing wrong with me


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Most days, I can’t even look at myself because I hate what I see. It’s not that I hate that I stutter. I’ve made peace with what I am after the death of my father. I hate the person I’ve become because of how I handled people asking about my stuttering. I have grown accustomed to simply pretending like it’s okay for them to continue laughing at me. It has become a habit for me to brush it off and hide in the corner, sealing my mouth… my voice… as if it is a sin for me to speak.

I am ashamed of what I am not because of my stuttering but how I carried myself and allowed people to treat me in that way. I feel useless and worthless, as if whatever I say has no credence to others but I know that’s not true. I know better but I can’t help but to feel this way most of the time

This is why I am writing this. It’s to finally tell people that it’s not okay for you to laugh at people who stutter, THAT IT IS NOT RIGHT FOR YOU TO TELL US TO HAVE MORE CONFIDENCE WITHIN OURSELVES. We are confident with who we are, we don’t have any problems with how we function as humans, so don’t confuse us with people who have no self confidence that they stutter when they get nervous. We stutter because this is how we were born.

We are not objects for your entertainment. So please, before you think it’s funny to chuckle, or giggle or straight out laugh at us, remember that we’re human beings too; we have hearts and feelings just like any of you who are reading this. But most of all, stop asking us to watch the King’s Speech. I am so sick of that movie.

We are more than our stutter. We are still people. Our voices still matter and our opinions are just as important as yours.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Firdaus Rahim a.k.a Sam is an introvert who enjoys acting like an extrovert. Catch him on Instagram @firdaustheknight.

Do you have a story/opinion you’d like to share? Write to us at askanythinglah@gmail.com, or drop us a line in the Write In page. Cover image courtesy of Telegraph and ReadWorks.

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