EMDR

 My Journey With Stuttering
Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing
 
If you have an interest in stuttering,
I would like to hear from you!

dalesander@hotmail.com 

I started attending regular monthly meetings with the Dallas chapter of the National Stuttering Association (NSA) about the same time I started Using Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR). I found an outstanding group of people from all walks of life in the NSA!  I can not thank this group enough for all their help and support!

If you are a person who stutters or have an interest in stuttering, I highly recommend that you look for a local NSA support group near you!  http://www.westutter.org

I am a person who stutters. Before I started my EMDR work, my stuttering felt like a speech disorder that seemed to just come out of nowhere! When a friend first told me about EMDR I thought simply, it works fast, it’s untried as speech therapy, so I would just give it a try. The work I did with my EMDR therapist was not focused on just my speech. She thought from the beginning the best way to approach my therapy was to start first my exploring my speaking fears and then follow what ever I found linking to these fears. I think she was correct with this approach!

After the first several EMDR sessions my stuttering becoming more severe and I was starting to think this therapy was not a good idea! My therapist thought I should try a few more sessions before giving up. After a two more sessions I found when I was in speaking situations with only people I did not know, my stuttering would just vanish! I also found that the EMDR sessions where becoming even more emotional painful than before. At that point I thought something very powerful is going on and I needed to see what might happen next!

Now with over fifteen years of exploring my stuttering with EMDR, I have come to understand how my stuttering most likely developed. When I was an infant before I started talking, I of course could still communicate by crying and waving my arms. Key to understanding my stuttering I believe was when I began to accept the idea that my childhood speech evolved from infant crying. I became that young boy who started stuttering in first grade when my fearful struggle to communicate as an infant became linked to my childhood speech production. My infant fears had been lost for a time but they where never forgotten. I am so glad I had the courage to explore my early childhood, because my stuttering now feels like such an important part of me!

Although I am having great success with EMDR, I do not believe this powerful therapy would often be successful if it is used as a quick fix for stuttering.  That said, I do believe EMDR holds great promise with helping people explore and better understand their stuttering!