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Talking about stuttering with your teen can be challenging, but it needs to happen! Read below for some tips on approaching this sensitive topic in a safe and dignified way.
1. Don't ignore the elephant in the room!
The worst thing to do is to pretend the stuttering is not there. That sends a message (and transmits a value/judgement) that this way of talking is a "no-no," taboo, we don't talk about it.
2. Talk about it, in a way that is respectful, dignified and nuanced
Use descriptive language - not judgmental language.
If we can use words that are descriptive and just acknowledge what it is, we can talk about stuttering in a respectful and sensitive manner
i.e.: “It must be hard sometimes, would you like to find some ways to learn how to make it easier to talk about it?”
Being insensitive can lead to negative outcomes including poor self-image, reduced confidence and ultimately, a young person who retreats into a safer shell of silence.