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Genetics, Stuttering and the Primal Scream

science Dr. Dennis Drayna is a human geneticist well known to the stuttering community for his renowned work researching the genetic basis of speech disorders. His team has made groundbreaking discoveries in the field and he has frequently appeared at conferences to share his findings. In April he was interviewed by Ben Chambers on the podcast Speaking of Science. Here is a summary of the interview.

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Where I Stand

Kim Block Kim during a radio interview.

I have been reflecting lately on my journey that started twenty years ago. Twenty years ago I was covert and I did absolutely everything in my power to hide my stuttering. It took my time in university for me to really practice being comfortable in my own skin and practice being open about my stuttering. Here is a poem that reflects some of that journey.

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Allison’s Story

Allison Allison, left, with her son and mother

My name is Allison and I’ve stuttered for as long as I can remember. Stuttering ran in my family, though not all stuttering is hereditary, and I was three years old when I had my first speech therapy session. I was lucky to have supportive parents by my side and as a child I was confident and outspoken despite my disfluency.

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Sold Out Montreal Screening of "When I Stutter" a Success

When I Stutter screening Q&A with filmmaker, John Gomez, moderated by Tangled Tongues
founder, Josephine Torossian. Franky Banky in attendance.
I’m still on a high from attending the Canadian premiere of the award winning When I Stutter documentary film co-hosted by the Association des bègues du Canada (ABC) and Tangled Tongues, an association for university students who stutter (see Facebook group here), in Montrèal on March 8.

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Stuttering Superhero

After reading Kim Block's "Adventure of a Stuttering Superhero" with his SLP, Matthew was inspired to make his own comic. Matthew writes "it is okay if you stutter" and with the help of stuttering superheroes, his characters learn stuttering is not something to be embarrassed about. Matthew is 9 years old and lives in Vancouver, BC. Click the image below to download a larger version of his comic.

comic

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