A stammer held Margaret O’Brien back for decades until she plucked up the courage to do something about it, writes Margaret Jennings
AT age 53, having hid behind a speech impediment all her life — avoiding social situations, lacking in confidence and unable to hold even a normal phone conversation — Cork mother of three Margaret O’Brien finally found her voice.
Although the Bandon-based head care assistant with the HSE had been working at the local community hospital for over three decades, her world otherwise had always been tightly held in rein by the fact that she stammered.
2018 has only just begun and yet the stuttering community has already stamped its mark on the nation. ‘School for Stammerers’ – the ITV documentary which aired (also on TV3 in Ireland) at the beginning of January 2018 – pulled at the heartstrings of everyone that tuned in. It followed the journey of some very brave people learning how to overcome their stutter through the McGuire Programme.
A very inspirational and emotional story from Puja Pietarila who did her Refresher Course (her 02. McGuire Course) in Berlin last October! Well done Puja, your presence and positive attitude brings energy to our courses and to the programme in Germany. Thank you for sharing and thank you for joining The McGuire Programme Please read and share!
As my fear escalated, my focus and determination simultaneously vanished. ‘Just take it in your stride,’ I told myself. I was visibly uncomfortable, like always, and was consumed with the fear of being ‘found out’, of being seen as stupid and incompetent, of being pitied, of being a stammerer. Then it came: “Patrick Hanlon, you’re next to speak…”
My name is Jamie Googan and I am proud to say that I am challenged by stammering. As a child growing up with a severe stammer, I always wondered why I spoke in a different way from other students and why they would laugh at me when I tried desperately to pronounce my own name. […]