Parents and speech therapists often connect with me to provide feedback and insights into their own journeys after reading Voice Unearthed: Hope, Help, and a Wake-Up Call for the Parents of Children Who Stutter.  With their permission I am sharing a number of their comments because not only do they make me do a happy dance around my living room but I believe their messages are of great value and can be helpful to others dealing with a child who stutters.   So here goes… 

Lily Valley:  This book was a godsend for us. I shared it with my extended family, as well as a friend who has a three year old having difficulty. A very heartfelt thank you to Dori. I still feel as though we are in the dark ages in some respects, but was so glad to read this, a true wake up call! It is a very easy read, her and Eli’s journey just pulls you along. I also shared it with a SLP friend who received it well and said she would share it with her colleagues as well.

Rachel Lavin:  I’ve got the book and it’s great. It was a real eye opener for me. My 10 year old son earlier this year attended a series of 6 group toolbox type sessions where first they identified in each other different types of blocks and difficulties as they heard them and then the therapist explained how to deal with them. Increasing his awareness of his stammer made his speech much worse and it took us 3 months to get back to where we were prior (& he didn’t use any of the techniques as he was too hung up on trying to speak). For some children that type of therapy might be useful but from reading your experience I could see very clearly what had happened with Harry.  I think all parents of children with a stammer should read it.

Gunars Neiders, PhD:  I just finished reading Voice Unearthed: Hope, Help, and a Wake-Up-Call for the Parents of Children Who Stutter. If people would take care to read this book, speech therapists would meet her challenge and “support kids’ growth and not add layers of guilt, shame, anxiety, silence, and failure to a child’s world.” Then as adults they would not have to read my book “From Stuttering to Fluency: How to Manage Your Emotions and Live More Fully”.

Simone Greenfield:  This is a must read book for parents of young children who are confused and unsure about speech therapy methods and approaches. My son is 6.5yo and has been stuttering since the age of 3yo. His stutter is so mild at the moment that it’s hard to believe that only a few weeks ago he was gasping for air trying to get a word out and we were desperate for any help. I can’t thank Rachel Lavin enough for telling me, a complete stranger, about this book. I thought I should share this with you all. I would’ve done things differently to start with if I had read this book before.

Suzanne Smith: I agree with Simone completely, this book is a must read for parents of children that stammer. My son Korben is 11 years now and has stammered since been 3yrs old, but like Kerry’s son he has periods of fluency, which can quickly turn to periods where he really struggles to get any words out & experiences facial grimacing-there seems to be no apparent trigger. After reading this book I asked myself the same questions- who struggles more Korben or me as a parent? The truth shocked the hell out of me -Korben deals with his stammer, is frustration, is anxiety & other peoples opinions! far better than me!! It’s a real eye opener- I wish I’d read it many moons ago.

Not only I read it, but my husband, granny and grandad who are very close to my son. We all felt the emotion you’ve described above and identified with the author’s experiences deeply. It hurt to know that what we were doing wasn’t helping the child at all and in fact it was harming despite our best intentions. I was always a bit sceptical about the methods used in the therapies but thought they were the experts not me. We should always trust our instincts.