So, about me then. My name is Rehan Nasir, and I’m 37, an American engineer working in Indianapolis. I have been stuttering since I was 7. I’m married with three kids under 10. Before coming to Indianapolis, we spent five years in Saudi Arabia. Before that, we lived in Omaha, Indianapolis, Pittsburgh and Philadelphia. I grew up in Pennsylvania and have a degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Pittsburgh.
As for stuttering treatments and therapies, there has been little done. From elementary to high school, I saw speech therapists that were provided by the school. The first one who I saw in elementary and junior high didn’t make much of a difference. I remember just having casual conversations (and not stuttering) and then having her tell me words and sounds to repeat. During high school, I had a different therapist who suggested some improvements to my breathing. She described it as a balloon — and then slowly let the air out to say words. I’ve used this technique — when I can remember — and it’s been somewhat successful.
After college I was able to get on the Pagoclone trials. I did that for about a year. I personally noticed some improvement, but can’t honestly remember if I could have been on a placebo or not. But I remember feeling more calm before speaking. I had a stressful job at the time, so I figured it must have been doing something. We moved toward the end of the trial and didn’t continue after that. While it’s not a cure, it certainly helped a little.
My objective for this site is to have a conversation about stuttering on a regular basis. It’s taken me this long to get online with this because I’m a closet stutterer — that is, I don’t want people to know that I stutter. But enough is enough. Time to get on with helping people and making someone else’s journey less painful.
I tried at first to post every day. That sort of worked, but then got to be too much with family, work and kids. I wanted to make sure the quality of the content remained high. So now I’m down to maybe once or twice a week. I have, however, written over a hundred thousand words on stuttering through this blog.
I went to my first NSA Conference in Washington DC. If you stutter and haven’t been, you absolutely must go. I can’t speak of it highly enough. I have since gone two more times — to Baltimore (when it was supposed to be in Chicago) and then this past July in Atlanta.
You can reach me at helloistutter at gmail dot com.