Wednesday, November 15, 1995

Why I joined the NSP

Ira Zimmerman commented that people who have largely overcome stuttering should perhaps form a separate organization (NSP stood for National Stuttering Project - the name was later changed to NSA)

granted that one could claim that "everything" we do is to meet some
need... I joined the NSP more to see if I could help than to find
"support" for a problem I felt I had largely overcome. Maybe this
was presumptious on my part, but it was my original motivation. It
turned out that I still received much more than I gave. Some of
what I received can be described as follows:
1. A sense of "coming home", embracing where I had been. Note that
until then I had always avoided other stutterers...! Interestingly I
had fully accepted (or so I thought) MY stuttering, but hearing others
stutter brought back too much pain... until I joined the NSP. This
was perhaps one more phase of healing I didn't know I needed.
2. Absolutely wonderful new friends. People like John Ahlbach and John
Harrison! And many others.... I see them rarely now, but when
I do it's like meeting family.
3. New and continuing insights on stuttering. Some that I am still
applying to myself, and some I can share with others (including
this list). On and off I toy with the idea of becoming a Stuttering
4. Surely much more than I am aware of.

"If you stutter you are not alone" is the NSP motto. I did grow up
"alone" and I wish I hadn't. The stuttering of each one of us takes
different paths, but none of us has to face it alone, ever again. I thought
I'd join to give support and embrace those who were still
struggling. It turns out that I embraced my "child" and that everyone
embraced me. Are you still puzzled Ira?

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