Statesman THOMAS JEFFERSON is one of the great figures of American history. But he had two serious handicaps – He was a painfully shy man and he had a high-pitched, low voice with a very bad stammer. But he still achieved great things in his life.
Hollywoood star BRUCE WILLIS was amazed that he launched a successful acting career, because he had a bad stammer as a child. He is quoted in a magazine article as saying. He was one of the fortunate people who grew out of it. And when he was in college he worked with a speech therapist. Who gave him some exercises to work on.
MARILYN MONROE’s little girl lost breathy style of speaking could very well have been her way of modifying her stammering. It is widely thought she had lessons from a speech coach to use exaggerated mouth movements and a breathy and affected style of talking to stop her stammering.
Singer CARLY SIMON has said in interviews she still can’t read in public without stuttering. And admits she still can’t read aloud. At times she couldn’t say H’s,and sometimes she had trouble saying S’s and other times that it was T’s. Carly feels that trying to keep her stuttering secret had a large part to play in her crippling stage fright, which has hampered her stage appearances.
JULIA ROBERTS and her fellow Heroes actor brother ERIC ROBERTS were both childhood stammerers.
American charity Stuttering Foundation of America (SFA) explained in their recent newsletter that they both suffered from the speech affliction as children.
“The two Roberts siblings both stuttered as children and ironically give credence to the factor of the heredity/genetic link in the stuttering equation. [They have] no doubt inspired young people with the problem,” wrote the newsletter.
JAMES EARL JONES refused to speak more than a few words at a time, even to his family. And in school he pretended to be mute, and communicated only in writing.While he was in high school a teacher challenged James to recite a poem in front of the class.He committed the verses to memory, And James found he could speak without stuttering. He then went on to compete in high-school debates and actually won a public-speaking contest.
HARVEY KEITEL hates people who try to silence his young son Roman when he starts to cry, because he believes his own stutttering problems come from being hushed as a child.He told interviewers, “I will not let anyone tell my son not to cry. I don’t want anyone to interfere with his expressing what he’s feeling.He is quoted as saying “As a kid I was told to hush and, as a result, it’s taken me a lifetime to be able to speak. “I had to hide it (tears) – you hammer it down until you can’t think anymore, you can’t speak anymore, and your inner world is in retreat. “You can’t function, and you stutter, which I did as a boy. You will stutter not only vocally, but inwardly. You will hesitate, you will fumble, you will futz.”
SAMUEL. L JACKSON the Pulp Fiction star attended public speaking classes to cure himself. And later won a part in a college musical. He changed his major to drama. And the rest is history. He went on to be a huge star appearing on TV and Hollywood movies.
If you are stutterer or stammerer or a friend or relative of a stammerer, there are many websites to find out more or to get help.
One such website is http://stammerinfo.yolasite.com This website has information,advice,self help and inspirational videos as well as links to other stuttering websites that can help.