Dating Struggles Of People Who Stammer
Forming relationships with members of the opposite sex is hard enough for many fluent people. Just think for a few moments about how difficult it is for people who suffer with the speech impediment known as stammering to have the confidence to form a long lasting relationship with a man/woman.
I am Stephen Hill and I had a stammer up until the age of twenty-two, at this point I managed to overcome the problem after a lot of hard work. Stammering badly affected my confidence and self-esteem. For many years I wondered if I would ever meet a girl who would be willing to be my girlfriend. I used to think in a very negative way and would often ask myself questions such as, why would any girl want to go out with me? What kind of girl is going to want to date somebody who has a lack of confidence and a stammer?
At the age of sixteen I started going out with my friends to pubs and clubs. My friends seemed to find it quite easy to form relationships with girls where as I did not have any confidence in my ability to talk to them.
I used to think things like:
If I meet a girl I will have to buy her a drink. No problem you might think, however I found it very hard to order drinks at the bar.
If I meet a girl I will be expected to phone her at least once a day. The phone was my worst area of speech and something I only used if I had to.
If I meet a girl I will have to meet her friends and family. I used to dread meeting new people as they always seemed to ask so many direct questions such as where do you work? I wanted to have a shirt printed with all of the answers to the most popular questions as I would normally stammer under the pressure. It would be so much easier just to point to the answer or to say number one for example.
I met my first ever girlfriend when I was eighteen, what a stud! I have to say she was superb and did not seem to care that I had a stammer. She was even happy to order my drinks and food for me and was basically a very nice girl. For whatever reason I did not believe that I was good enough for her and constantly worried that she would dump me. As you can see I was a very positive person. How would I cope if she left me? How long would it take me to meet somebody else who would be willing to date somebody with a stammer?
This girl did leave me but I did date her for fourteen months. I did cope despite my reservations and was surprised to find that most girls/women that I met after this did not care that I had a stammer. I still found the whole disabled dating process very difficult especially at the outset.
Image by Lonnon Foster
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