My name is Dhanush Javaraiah Kumaraswamy, I am from Mysuru, Karnataka, India. I am 22 years old. I began stuttering at the age of 5. My mother told me that I used to mimic a character from a movie who used to stutter. Initially my parents laughed and took it lightly because they taught that I was mimicking a character but eventually they became worried as I began to stutter the entire time. My stuttering became so severe that my parents started taking me to a speech doctor at ‘All India institute of Speech and hearing”. I don’t remember what they taught me there as I was 6 to 7 years old at that time but my mother told me that I began to stutter a bit less after receiving the therapy. As the time passed, I started developing blocks. Whenever I spoke, if any words started with letter K, D, T, P, W, C and N, I used to block. Even if I forced the word to come out of my mouth, my facial expression would be so awkward that I was embarrassed every time. This is the reason I hated going to school on the first day because I knew teachers was going to ask me to introduce myself or to read a paragraph from a chapter before the entire class.
I was constantly looking for a cure. I tried to find cure on the internet where some suggested to manipulate my breathing while talking but it made my speech sound robotic. I even tried working on my own methods and strategies to defeat it but I was unable to win the battle.
I had no choice but to look at alternate solutions. I was browsing YouTube for solutions and I stumbled upon Lee’s YouTube channel. There I saw success story of Prathusha and how she was able to beat stuttering in short span of time. Then, I discovered Lee’s book, “Stuttering & Anxiety Self-Cures”. I read the book and immediately started practicing Lee’s methods but I found it hard in understanding some of the crutches. I then reached out to Mr. Lovett as I believed I needed specific guidance on how to apply these crutches. He welcomed me with open arms and introduced me one of his fellow PWSS and student- Prathusha.
Prathusha started coaching me via live training sessions every week and used to assign homework at the end. This includes reading aloud daily, doing auto suggestions (talking to yourself positively) and practicing my speech using the crutches in all situations, all of these which are explained in great detail in his book. These helped and continues to help me immensely as it assists me in keeping a positive mindset to every situation and gives me the confidence i need to eliminate my speech anxiety.
I have not appeared speech disabled for over a month and can now consider myself a PWSS (person who stopped stuttering) after my fifth session. I was joyous after hearing those words from Prathusha, however she explained that this training and instilling of positive thoughts is a never-ending process and must be continued. I truly believe that I have now achieved the goal, however, I just need to keep doing my auto suggestions and using my crutch when I need one. You can watch me explain my story in the following link:
I would like to thank World Stop Stuttering Association and both my coaches Lee and especially Prathusha for reserving an hour out of her busy schedule and for the knowledge shared throughout my journey so far. You both are true life savers and have given me the confidence and tools needed to destroy my speech anxiety. If I can beat it, you can too. Just join World Stop Stuttering Association at https://worldstopstuttering.org/ and do it.
DHANUSH, India, July 2020