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There is something I would like to tell everyone who has a stutter or knows someone who does. I attended a speech program that has radically changed my life. I had a severe stutter ever since I was able to talk and had finally had it with people laughing at me and giving me a hard time while I struggled to get out a word.

People who don't have speech problems just don't understand what a stutterer has to go through. I have had very embarrassing moments while dealing with the general public. Sales clerks have turned to the person I was with and asked "What does she want?" I just crawled further inside myself and didn’t talk to anyone. I led a miserable existence.

Then I decided to go to college and learn to work on computers. I thought if I was a computer operator I would not have to talk to anyone and that would be a perfect job for me. I could hide from my stuttering. But, I found out that in my field I would have to also talk on the phone a great deal. I loved computers, so I decided to do something about my speech. I was tired of hiding and avoiding conversations. I wanted a social life like my fluent friends had.

After two years of getting my courage up, I enrolled in the therapy program headed by Ross Barrett at The Precision Fluency Shaping Program in Norfolk, Virginia. At first I was excited but a little skeptical. I had been stuttering for as long as I could remember, how could this program help me? After the first day, I knew this was it. It was going to be hard work but if I tried really hard I believed I could overcome it. Ross helped me become fluent for the first time in my life. I feel very indebted to him, for he gave me something no one else seemed to be able to: The method to stop stuttering once and for all.

Since I have been out of the program and speaking fluently, I have been more independent. I have been working as a computer operator/word processor and I am not terrified to talk on the phone and people do not hang up on me anymore, which is a relief. It feels so good to be fluent and able to speak what's on my mind, instead of just watching others tell their opinion - now I can express mine, too. I feel like someone has let me out of a dark room and I am finally free.

I can not express into words what the stuttering therapy program had done for me but if I had to choose one word, I would say it performed a "miracle" in my life. Those were the best days I have ever spent. I hope every person who stutters will try this program. If you really want fluent speech and you are not afraid of hard work, this is the last speech program you will ever have to participate in. I know this program will change your life forever - it has made mine wonderful!

Tana Sanders