Stuttering in Mainstream Media – Blog 5: The Printer Theory

How can you compare Stuttering to a printer? How can people understand a stutter if they haven’t got one themselves? How can learning about a stutter help treat it? I hope to answer these questions in today’s blog all about a Stuttering Theory I created myself.

Hello and Welcome to Sweeney’s Blogs!

Today’s blog is going to be the fifth blog in the Stuttering in Mainstream Media series and is going to be about The Printer Theory, a theory that I myself created to help visualise what living with a stutter is actually like. The theory itself can be interpreted in a number of different ways so if you interpret it a different way to how I am saying it that is more than fine.

I created The Printer Theory when I was asked to describe what living with a stutter is like to a few of my University friends this year. I had rarely been asked what living with a stutter was like before going to university so I didn’t have an answer ready at the time. This is when I decided to improvise and came up with The Printer Theory. Even though the theory doesn’t cover all aspects of life with a stutter I still think that it is a good place to start.

The first part of The Printer Theory is about the type of stutter where you just cannot get the words out, no matter how hard you try. So let’s say you have a document on the computer that you want to print out. You do all the normal things such as going to options, selecting print and then waiting for the printer to print the document out. Your document starts printing and then you get a paper jam in the printer.

If you have a paper jam then sending another twenty documents to the printer will not do anything, it will just put more pressure on the CPU of the computer and will affect the interrupts happening to the computer which will slow it down. Sending more documents to the computer will do nothing to help the actual problem which is the paper jam. This can easily be related to having a conversation with a person who has a stutter. If they are stuck on a particular word then asking them 20 more questions will do nothing to help them, it will just stress them out and might even lead to them stuttering more.

To fix a paper jam in the printer you would slowly find out the problem and then try a few ways to resolve it. Forcing the paper out when you have a paper jam will not help the issue, this is the exact same as dealing with a stutter. If someone who you are having a conversation with gets stuck on a word then you definitely should not try to force them to speak, they are trying they just cannot get the words out. What you need to do is simple.

The first step to helping someone who cannot get the words out is to actually realise that they are stuck on a word. If you recognise that someone is struggling then it makes it easier for you to understand and easier for them to get over it. The next step is to try a few different solutions. The first solution I recommend is maybe rewording the question that you asked them. Usually, if a person is simply stuck on one word then if you reword the question they will not even have to try and say it. There are lots of other techniques you can try if this doesn’t work but the key is to be patient, do not rush someone with a stutter as that will help no one.

One of the next links that a stutter has to a printer is when it comes to the order of entities. When you print something out, it is printed in a set order, this is the exact same as the way we speak. If the pages were printed in a random order then we would have to spend a lot of time simply working out the order of the pages and then what they are actually trying to tell us, this works the same with how we speak. We form sentences in a way that they are easy to understand and our words are in a logical order.

Just because a printer may take a long time to print out a particular page, it doesn’t mean that you write it out to try to beat the printer. If a printer was taking a while to print something out then you would wait patiently until it was finished, this links perfectly with a stutter. If a person is taking a while to say a particular word, sentence it does not give you the right to try and speak for them or just rush them into finishing. Rushing someone to speak when they have a stutter severely lowers their self-confidence and leads them to feel more embarrassed when they do eventually stutter.

This links in well to one of the main problems I have when speaking to people when they know that I have a stutter. Most people who do not have a stutter or who haven’t been close to someone who has a stutter think that finishing sentences for people who are struggling helps them out, it actually makes us feel useless. What people don’t actually think about, and this is not a criticism to people, it is just a fact, is that when we are stuttering we are trying really hard to get the words out. If you just jump in and finish the sentence for them, even if you do it with good intentions, then it makes us feel worthless. This paragraph is not meant to be having a go at anyone it is simply explaining something that most people don’t usually think of.

As you can see from the blog above there are lots of different links you can make between a printer and a person who stutters. There are indeed a lot more links that you can find but I have explained the main ones that I wanted to talk about in this blog. If you do find anymore and want to talk them through feel free to send me a message, I’ll more than happily respond!

Thanks for reading today’s blog! What do you all think? Next time you speak to someone with a stutter try and use a few of the points that I made today. Don’t rush them, be patient and please don’t finish sentences for them. I hope you all have a great week and remember to keep Highlighting the I in Difference!

Thanks again for reading and for all of the support,

Sweeney’s Blogs

Any money donated here will be put back into the business. This can be through marketing campaigns, upgrades to plans or for setting up future events!

£5.00

James

The Future of the Page

We have had a lot of new readers join the page and the community recently and I believe that now is a good time to do an update post for the page in general. I know I did an update post last week but that was for the blog series that I run, today’s is going to be about the page in general.

Hello and Welcome to Sweeney’s Blogs!

First of all, I just wanted to say a big thank you for all the support that the blog has been getting recently. The speed in which the blog is growing still surprise me and it is excellent to see so many new readers each day. If you want to know more about me and why I write the blogs, feel free to check out the About Me page. The About Me page, https://sweeneysblog.com/about-me/, should hopefully cover all the areas on what the blog is and what we hope to achieve.

I do have a lot of ideas for where I see the blog going in the future. One of the next biggest steps that the blog is going to take is upgrading our website plan. Currently, the plan that I am using does not allow me to use plugins on the blog. Plugins are excellent tools that I believe would help take the blog to the next level. The only reason that I haven’t updated the page as of yet is that it is going to cost me around £300 a year. As I am a student living in University and the website itself doesn’t generate much income I simply cannot afford to update it in the future. In the meantime, I will do some research into what plugins would be good for the page when I can eventually afford to use them.

In terms of where the blog series are going on the page, I have started planing some of the series that I talked about in last weeks Future blog Series blog, https://sweeneysblog.com/2019/07/18/future-blog-series/, and I think that a few of them are nearly ready to start writing. I feel like the Stuttering in Mainstream Media series is going to go on for a while longer too. I am really enjoying writing the blogs for the series at the minute and they seem to be going down quite well with readers. I think that the blogs are going to remain as one blog for a series at the start of the week and one singular log at the end of the week but that may change in the future depends on how the blogs are doing. I might start doing a blog in one series at the start of the week and then one for another series at the end of the week. This is not for definite it is just speculation at this point.

For the business as a whole, I have quite a few milestones left to hit for this year. I am extremely happy with how fast the page is growing at the minute and I do hope that we surpass 5,000 total views by the end of the year. The way that I see it is that the more the blog grows, the more chance that someone who needs help from the blogs will get the chance to read them. The blogs are designed to help people so the more people that read them the better. If you know anyone who you think the blogs would help or anyone who is interested in the blog tell them to have a look. It is always nice to have new people join the community.

I am hoping to launch the second half of the business in the near future. The second half of the business is going to be me going into different organisations and business and doing talks and courses on Stuttering, Stress and Mental Health. If any of you know a business that needs courses run on any of these topics let me know. I do not want to charge much for the course just enough to keep the page running and allow me to expand it in the future.

I believe that is everything that I wanted to cover in today’s blog. I wanted to be clean with everything that I have planned for the page so thats where the inspiration for today’s blog came from. If anyone has any questions or comments about any of my blogs then please get in touch with me. You can get in touch through the comments on this post, through the contact page or even through our Facebook group, Sweeney’s Blogs!

Thank you all for reading and I hope you enjoyed! Hope you all have a great week and remember to keep Highlighting the I in Difference!

Sweeney’s Blogs

Any money donated here will be put back into the business. This can be through marketing campaigns, upgrades to plans or for setting up future events!

£5.00

James

Stuttering in Mainstream Media – Blog 4: Being Picked on by a Teacher

Stuttering affects lots of different people in lots of different ways. One of the main factors to think of when it comes to stuttering is how people react to you. Teachers in school are there to support and mentor you so how do you react when one of them makes fun of your stutter? This is something that I have gone through and I will discuss it further in this blog.

Hello and Welcome to Sweeney’s Blogs!

Today’s blog is going to be the fourth blog in my Stuttering in Mainstream Media series and is going to focus on when I was picked on by a teacher in school for stuttering. I loved school and learning when I was younger and even though I encourage everyone to look at the positives all the time there are times when you need to look at the negatives to learn and develop from them. This blog is going to look at how a teacher picked on my stutter, how I reacted at the time and what we can learn from it.

The incident itself happened when I was in year 8 back in Secondary School. Me and my classmates in 8f were in a History lesson at the time. F was one of the top sets in the year. The class was close to the start of the year and our teacher asked us what we think we should learn about this year. Most of the class asked if we would learn about World War 2 or about Slavery and I would just sit and listen. I used to feel quite scared about speaking up in class due to my stutter but I finally thought I would give speaking a go.

I had been a big fan of reading encyclopaedias and history books at the time and had starting learning a lot about Oliver Cromwell. I had read all the books I had on him and didn’t understand the formal articles that were published online. I was really interested in his story however so decided to try and ask our teacher if we would be learning about him. Before I go further into the story I am not going to be mentioning the teachers name in theis blog as that is not the point of the blog, the point of the blog is to learn from my experience and how it affected me, it is not meant as an attack to the teacher in question.

I raised my hand and the teacher said my name. I started off asking the question, “Miss, do we get the chance to learn” when I just couldn’t get anymore words out. When I finally  got the confidence to carry on every word I said was full of stutters, “abbbooout Oliver Cccrrrom Cromwell this year?” The question itself was easy to understand even though I stuttered a number of times. Instead of answering the question though the teacher decided to stop, make everyone quiet and then turned to speak to me.

She looked at me and said ” Jjjjames ssspeak prop-er-ly.” I just sat there staring at her in pure shock. I didn’t know how to react or what to do at the time. School was a place where I felt safe growing up and it is somewhere that I really enjoyed to be in. I couldn’t understand why someone in her position would make fun of me in front of the whole class. The rest of the class went completely silent too, no one knowing what to say or how to react.

This lesson was the very first lesson of the day. I didn’t speak again until lunchtime that day, around 4 hours after the lesson happened. No one really noticed that I wasn’t speaking until we all went out to get lunch. I was with my mates on the yard when a boy from my class comes over and starts telling everyone about what happened in History. I didn’t say a word when he was telling the story, I just listened and stared in the distance. When he finished the story everyone just turned and looked at me.

I did not know what to do when the boy was telling the story. I did not know how I should have felt, what I should have done, who I should have spoken to, etc. it is why I just stared into the distance, I was lost. After the boy finished telling the story all of my friends looked the same. Some spoke to me like they felt sorry for me, one or two seemed like they had genuine empathy for me and then the rest just didn’t react, they just stood there thinking.

It was when two of my good friends, Zac and Dylan, found out that action was taken. Zac and Dylan had been my friends all the way through Primary and Secondary school. They understood the affect that my stutter had on me and that making fun of it or joking about it was not okay. As soon as they found out what happened they came over to see if I was alright and if there was anything they could do.

Aftr speaking to me they went to see our Head of Year to make a complaint against the teacher, something I didn’t know they were going to do at the time. If Zac and Dylan take action there and then then I do not think that anything would have been done about it and I feel like I wouldn’t have gotten over this incident. In their own rights they can be classed as stutterspirations as they took action to help me, a person with a stutter out, when no one asked them too, they simply did it off their own backs. Even though they may not know it but they did a great thing that went a long way to helping me control my stutter.

See the source image

As lunchtime break ended on that day everyone went back inside ready for afternoon registration. As I was walking back towards my class my Head of Year called me into her office. She informed me that Zac and Dylan came to her with a complaint against my history teacher and they told her what happened. She sat me down and asked me to go through my side of the story.

I took a set in her office and slowly explained everything that happened from the start of the day up to now and how it made me feel. She sat there listening making notes on a notepad. I stopped a few times when telling the story due to stuttering or when I would get a bit emotional going through it. It was at this point that the reality of what actually happened dawned on me.

After we finished discussing what happened she asked if I wanted to go home or if I wanted to stay in school. I said that I want to stay in school as there is only one lesson left in the day and  do not want to fall behind on work. She then asked me if I want to make a complaint against the teacher or if I want to swap classes to be taught by a different history. I thanked her for both offers but refused them both. I would stay in the class, to prove to myself that I was strong enough and that I couldn’t be broken by one person.

It took me a while to get back to normal after that day. It took me around two to three days to start answering questions in class again and then around a week or so to start asking questions again. I was lucky that I was a fast learner at the time and that I understood the topics we were studying as I am the type of person that usually has a lot of questions about the work we are doing.

I decided against telling my parents what happened at first. I cannot remember exactly why i decided not to tell them but I think that I thought that if no one spoke about it then it would be forgotten about and then I could move on in some way. They eventually found out through a friend of mines mum at a football game on the following Saturday and then I filled them in on everything that had happened.

soccer ball

My mother decided to write a letter to the school voicing her concerns over the matter and then went in to have a meeting with the headmaster. During the following tutorial session on Monday morning I was called out of my class to go to the headmasters office. When I got there he asked me to sit down and tell him what happened from start to finish so I did. As I was talking through what happened he was just sitting there listening, nodding, trying to understand what happened and how to handle it.

After I had told him everything he got a fellow student to go and get the teacher from her class. When she came into his office, I started shaking, dreading what was going to happen next. He then asked me to repeat everything that I had just told him in front of the teacher. I started telling the story again, looking at her reaction every so often to she how she would react. As soon as I finished the story I closed my eyes for a few seconds to stop myself from breaking down and then turned to see what was going to happen.

Our headteacher made the teacher apologise to me and then he asked her to go back to her class. After she left the room he asked me if I was alright and if I wanted to go home. i said that I would stay in school thank you but I just need a few minutes to pick myself back up and then I would be find to go back to lessons. He nodded and agreed and told me that if I felt like I needed to leave any class for a few minutes then it would be more than fine and he would inform my other teachers on what had happened.

That is the story of how a teacher picked on me in front of the whole class back in Secondary school. I have never told the story to anyone since leaving school so it was quite nice to finally air it out and explain what actually happened. We can learn quite a lot from the story, even though it seems very negative and bleak there are a few interesting lessons we can take from it.

Firstly speaking out is very important. I was too scared to speak out about what happned at first but was very lucky that my good friends Zac and Dylan were there to do it for me. Speaking out takes a lot of courage but it is the only way that change will ever happen. We can’t just sit around and wait for change to happen, if we think something is wrong we have t speak up and try and make a change for the better. Speaking out seems like a very basic and easy thing but it can be one of the hardest things you can do. People usually don’t understand things unless you explain it to them.

Taking action is very important. Always try and take action yourself and if you see someone in trouble then try to help them out. Be the person that Zac and Dylan were for me. They saw that I was struggling and they stepped in. Always try your best to help people out, you never know they might return the favour in the future.

Secondly you can always pick yourself back up. After the teacher made fun of me I thought that I would never be able to speak in front of people again. It shook me to my core that someone in a position such as a teacher would pick on me in front of my whole class. It took me a while to understand that if I didn’t speak in class again then the only person it would impact on would be myself and I couldn’t let myself down because of someone else’s mistake.

That is all I want to talk about in today’s blog! I know today’s blog was a bit longer than what I usually do but I think it is important to go through the story and talk about how it affected me and how you can pick yourself back up again after someone knocks you down. What do you all think? Did you enjoy reading today’s blog? Have you got any stuttering stories you want to share? What do you think of what the teacher did? How would you react if it happened to you? Let me know your answers to the questions and any other thoughts you had on the blog in the comments or get in touch with me through the Sweeney’s Blogs Facebook page.

Thanks for reading and I hope you all enjoyed! Remember keep Highlighting the I in Difference!

Sweeney’s Blogs

Any money donated here will be put back into the business. This can be through marketing campaigns, upgrades to plans or for setting up future events!

£5.00

James

Future Blog Series

Hello and Welcome to Sweeney’s Blogs!

Today’s blog is going to act as an update blog focused around the future of different series on this page. I think that it is good to present a few of the ideas I have now and see if anyone wants them to become a series in the future or not. The ideas listed in this blog are not all of my ideas merely some of them but if you have an idea yourself for a series then please get in touch and we’ll discuss it further!

I have had one or two questions lately regarding the Looking Into Male Mental Health series. I do have every intention to bring the series back, I just need a bit of time to plan where the series was going. the last thing that I want to do is rush the blogs as that takes the care and sentiment away from them. As to when the series will come back, I am not 100% sure yet. I might bring the series back after the Stuttering in Mainstream Media series or maybe at a later date. When the series comes back is down to a few factors. If people really want to see the series return then it will come back sooner, if the Stuttering in Mainstream Media series does not go down very well then it’ll come back sooner and if I get a lot of messages regarding the series then I will bring it back sooner!

One series that I’ve wanted to do for a while is Into the Mind of a Bully. I feel like it would be quite a good series to run as it will encompass both personal experiences alongside factual evidence. The series will start off by talking about the most common reasons for bullying then will take a deeper look into it. I have had a lot of experience in regards to being bullied in my life so I think that I can portray a very real story.

brown brain

Another potential series that I can run is one based off of Respect. Respect is a topic that is often refrained from talking about by most people but I think it could make quite a good series. We can take a look at the modern world and see what respect is nowadays and if there is still a divide between different social groups. I feel like this series can have a lot of different contrasting views and will make for some good discussions in the comments.

A sadder more emotional series that I could run would be called Watching them Fade Away. This series will look at the progression of Alzheimer’s and Dementia and how you are watching a loved one slowly fade away from in front of your very eyes. As mentioned previously it would be a sadder series but I feel like it would be a very informative one and will help deliver a strong message.

I am also thinking about possibly running a few series based off of University Students. There are quite a few series I could run off this topic such as student burnout and what university is actually like for a student. I believe these series will be good to take a look into student life and to show people that it is not always as easy as some people assume. This series will be quite fun to write as it will allow me to perform self-evaluation whilst writing it.

group of fresh graduates students throwing their academic hat in the air

The last series that I want to talk about in today’s blog is all about the Self Hate Cycle. I have talked about the Self Hate Cycle in a previous blog in my Looking into Male Mental Health series but feel like it would be an excellent topic to write a series on. As discussed in the blog, https://sweeneysblog.com/2019/06/11/looking-into-male-mental-health-blog-9-personal-experience-2/, the self-hate cycle is quite dark and bleak however there are ways to break out of it. I believe that if I were to run a series on it then I could balance out some of the negatives with the positives and show that if you are in this cycle there is always a way out, no matter how hard and long it may seem.

Thank you for reading today’s blog! What series would you like to see in the future? Are there any series that you want to see return? Are there any series that you are not a fan of and don’t want me to write? Do you have any ideas that you think would make a good series or even an individual blog? Let me know what you think of the blog and your answer to the questions in the comments below!

Thank you all for reading and I hope you have a great weekend! Remeber keep Highlighting the I in Difference!

Sweeney’s Blogs

Any money donated here will be put back into the business. This can be through marketing campaigns, upgrades to plans or for setting up future events!

£5.00

James

Stuttering in Mainstream Media – Blog 3: Stutterspirations

What is a stutterspiration? How do they help people who stutter? What does it take to be a stutterspiration?

Hello and Welcome to Sweeney’s Blogs!

Today’s blog is going to be the fourth blog in the Stuttering in Mainstream Media series and is going to be about Stutterspirations. Stutterspiration is a word that I have created to help distinguish a certain type of people. A Stutterspiration is a person with a stutter who inspires other people who have a stutter. The main purpose of this blog is to take a deeper look into what a stutterspiration actually is and how they help influence others.

The interesting thing when it comes to stutterspirations is that they can be found in almost all walks of life. A stutter does not discriminate which means that we can find people with stutters in all aspects of the media. In this blog, we are going to briefly talk about a person who I class as a stutterspiration and how they earned success off their talent alone.

The first person that I ever classed as a Stutterspiration is Harrison Craig. Harrison Craig is an Australian Singer who found his fame by winning the second season of The Voice Australia. Harrisons audition is where we first found out about his stutter. If you have not seen his audition or maybe want to rewatch it then you are more than welcome to click on the video below.

One of the things that I find the most interesting with Harrison’s story is that he does not get through via sympathy, he gets through simply down to pure talent. If anyone is not familiar with how the voice works then the premise is simple. Contestants sing on stage with the four coaches turned away from them, if the coach likes what they hear then they press their button and turn their chair. The contestant then gets to decide which team to go on based off which judge/ judges turn around and then progress through to the next stage of the competition.

Now as I said previously Harrisons got through his audition and then indeed went on to win the competition down to pure talent alone. Even though he has a stutter and struggles to full sentences at times without stuttering, his singing is still faultless. This just goes to show that having a stutter should not hold you back, you can still be successful even if you can’t speak without stopping sometimes.

See the source image

Harrison’s story helped me realise quite a few things about how I approached my life when it came to my stutter. The fact that Harrisons pursued his dream and went on live TV with a stutter solidified the idea in my head that my stutter should not hold me back in life. I started to approach life in a more confident way and started doing things that I wanted to do. This confidence boost was one of the reasons I became a Swimming Teacher and has allowed me to teach numerous swimmers over the past 3 years. A small portion of my achievement has to be given to people like Harrison who showed us that it is possible.

I have had a lot of different people in my life tell me that I cannot do certain things due to the fact that I have a stutter. Harrison’s story is a perfect example as to why they are completely wrong. A stutter does not limit you in regard to what you want to do in life. The only thing that does limit you if you have a stutter is yourself. A stutter may make you take longer to say some things but that does not mean that your voice is any less important than someone else’s.

That is all I want to talk about in today’s blog. Thank you all for reading! What do you all think? Did you know Harrison’s story before reading this blog? Do you know of any stutterspirations in your life? What attributes do you think leads to a person being a stutterspiration? Let me know what you think and any other comments you have about my blogs in the comments of this blog or on our Facebook page.

Thank you all for reading and I hope to see you all in the next blog! Have a great week and remember to Highlight the I in difference!

Sweeney’s Blogs

Any money donated here will be put back into the business. This can be through marketing campaigns, upgrades to plans or for setting up future events!

£5.00

James

A positive Outlook for a Positive Life — mobevision.wordpress.com

Our outlook and attitude on life, in general, plays a huge part in how happy we are in life and how successful we become. Someone who thinks positively about everything will be more relaxed, calm and smile more than someone who is always looking at the bad side, who lets stress get to them and […]

via A positive Outlook for a Positive Life — mobevision.wordpress.com

Stuttering in Mainstream Media – Blog 2: Do age and gender affect having a stutter?

Ever wondered if age had an effect on if someone stuttered? Do more men stutter? Do men outgrow stutters more than women do?

Hello and Welcome to Sweeney’s Blogs!

Today’s blog is going to be the second blog in the Stuttering in Mainstream Media series. This blog is going to cover whether age and gender have an impact on if a person stutters or not. It is very important to understand what stuttering is and how it affects different people before we start looking at how stutters are covered in mainstream Media as it allows us to go in with a more balanced view.

I wasn’t originally going to go into the contributing factors in this series but after a few questions asked in the last blog by Sarah Chorley on our Facebook page (thank you for the feedback and the questions!). I am more than happy to tailor what content is covered in each of these blogs to what you all want to see so if you have any ideas or thoughts on what you would like me to cover then please get in touch!

Gender is surprisingly one of the largest factors to look at when finding the difference in people who stutter. I originally didn’t think gender had an influence on people having a stutter but the facts tell a completely different story. An article by The Stuttering Association called On the Gender Factor in Stuttering, can be found here: https://www.stutteringhelp.org/gender-factor-stuttering, provides an in-depth view on how gender and a few factors do have an effect on if a person stutters or not.

What I really like about this article is that it talks about gender differences in the number of people stuttering in different generations. it allows us to look at the factors of gender and age at the same time. The first statistic we are going to be looking at is the difference between male and females at primary school age. The article tells us that there is a difference between the genders, providing us with a male-to-female ratio of 2:1 for children in primary school.

This difference may seem very small but when we put it into context the numbers can be alarming. Let us use a class size of 30, 15 boys and 15 girls for an example. For this example, we are going to say that 5 girls in the class have a stutter. If 5 girls in the class have a stutter it means that 10 out of the 15 boys in the class have a stutter. The ratio shows us that for every 1 girl that has a stutter, theoretically speaking, 2 boys would have a stutter. This statistic is crazy and it just gets more interesting in older people.

The article tells us that for people who are older the male-to-female ratio increase to 4:1 or even greater. Putting this into a very basic example, if we have for every 100 females who have a stutter, there will be 400 or more men that will also have a stutter. This ratio of quadruple the difference between genders is really interesting and caught me completely off-guard.

There are even more alarming statistics in the article which you’re more than welcome to read from the link provided but the ones that surprise me is in regard to stutter recovery.  Apparently, men are more likely to develop chronic stutters than women. This can be traced to several different factors. Start, the Stuttering Treatment and Research Trust, https://www.stuttering.co.nz/news/why-are-males-more-likely-to-stutter/, help provide us with a few different reasons behind the difference between men and women.

They explain to us that females are more likely to naturally outgrow their stutters compared to males. The reasons for this as well as the reasons behind men stuttering more than women have not been identified as of yet. It is a topic that is under research and each experiment and researcher has their own view and opinion. It is agreed by nearly all industry professionals that if you or anyone you know does suffer from a stutter then it is best if they seek professional help.

Professional help for stuttering can usually be good as it can help us locate the reason why we stutter and then we can work to combat it. The main problem arises when it comes down to which treatment style works for you. I will be doing a blog on different stuttering solutions in the future but I do have one up on the page already. The blog that I have already written about a stuttering solution is called Rhythmical Thinking and it can be found here: https://sweeneysblog.com/2019/02/07/rhythmical-thinking-a-stuttering-solution/. The blog talks about a coping technique I used, how it works and how it helped me. Give it a read if you haven’t already!

That’s all I want to talk about in today’s blog! Thank you all for reading and I hope you’ve enjoyed it! I will be in Rhodes from the 3rd-10th of July so I may be unable to respond to comments as quickly as I usually do. I will try to answer questions as quickly as I can but I will be on holiday so apologies if it takes a little bit longer.

What do you all think fo today’s blog? Did you think that age or gender had an influence on having a stutter before reading the blog? Has anything I have talked about in this blog surprised you? Why do you think men stutter more than women? Let me know what you think in the comments or on our Facebook page! If you have any ideas or thoughts for the future of the series too let me know!

Thank you all for reading and a big thanks for the continued support! Hope you all have a great week and I’ll see you in the next blog coming this Thursday!

Sweeney’s Blogs

Any money donated here will be put back into the business. This can be through marketing campaigns, upgrades to plans or for setting up future events!

£5.00

James

Stuttering in Mainstream Media – Blog 1: An Introduction

Stuttering, a monumental topic that is often not given the attention it deserves. Many people know people who have a stutter but they really research into what a stutter is and how it can impact someone’s life. This series is going to delve into the world of stutters and reveal another side to the common condition.

Hello and Welcome to Sweeney’s Blogs!

Today’s blog is going to be the first blog in the new series, Stuttering in Mainstream Media. This series is going to really take a look at how a stutter can impact a person’s life, how it is covered in Mainstream Media and how we as a society can take a look at stutters in a new light. One of the biggest questions that arise when looking at stutters and stammers is what really is a stutter?

When it comes to looking at what a stutter really is, there are lots of different possibilities. The NHS,https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/stammering/, break down stuttering/stammering into 3 different definitions. The first definition for a stutter is when “your repeat sounds or syllables” of a word. This is usually the most common definition for a stutter and is usually the one that has the most impact on your life.

The second definition the NHS provide is when you “make sounds longer”. An example of this can be with the word, please. People who do not have a stutter will say the word please, simply as the word, please. People who have a stutter, however, tend to extend parts of the word so it can end up sounding like pppppplease. It is usually harder to identify people who stutter this way.

The last definition that we are going to cover in this blog is when “a word gets stuck or doesn’t come out at all”. This type of stuttering is the one that I found hardest to learn to live with. It is one that isn’t usually talked about even though it can lead to a severe decrease in a persons self-confidence and in some cases can lead to people isolating themselves.

As you can see from the three definitions above stuttering/stammering comes in many different forms. There is a common misconception that stuttering does not have much of an effect on people which is something that I am aiming to change. The main objective of this series is to raise awareness into what stutters actually are, to talk about my own experiences about living with a stutter and then to bring in how stutters are covered in the media, on talent shows and in society in general.

That’s all I want to talk about in today’s blog! I hope you’re all looking forward to the blogs in this series as much as I am. Do you have any questions about stuttering that you want answers too? Have you ever had a stutter? Do you know anyone who has a stutter? How has it affected them? Are there any famous people you know who have a stutter? Let me know what you think in the comments or via our Facebook page.

Thank you all for reading today’s blog! I want to say a massive thank you to everyone too as we have now reached over 100 likes on the pages Facebook page. Hope you all have a great week and I’ll see you in the next blog!

Sweeney’s Blogs

Any money donated here will be put back into the business. This can be through marketing campaigns, upgrades to plans or for setting up future events!

£5.00

James

Why Positivity Doesn’t Mean Being Happy All the Time — Currently, Lately

A common misconception I often see people have about positivity is that it’s blind optimism. That to be positive, you must disregard negativity, see the best in everything, and pay no attention to issues that come your way. Not only is this assumption incorrect, but I’d also argue that it perpetuates a toxic concept of […]

via Why Positivity Doesn’t Mean Being Happy All the Time — Currently, Lately

What You Learn by Travelling? — misselenka

We are a part of the culture, in which we were born and raised. We speak the language of that country. We think through the particular cultural pattern, which is the ‘only’ and ‘correct’ one. We never realise it till we go away from our motherland. When I moved to Finland from Russia, I was […]

via What You Learn by Travelling? — misselenka

Looking into Male Mental Health – Blog 11: Getting back up again

Hello and Welcome to Sweeney’s Blogs!

Today’s blog is the 11th blog in the Looking into Male Mental Health series and is going to be about getting back up again. This is going to be the last blog in the series for a short while as I am putting the series on hold for a while to work on a series about Stuttering in Mainstream Media. I think that if I put the series on hold for a few weeks then when I bring it back it will seem fresher and I will have more time to plan the ideas out and give the blogs the attention and focus that they deserve.

Getting back up again is a short phrase that seems really easy to do, however, it is not always easy. I find that the two hardest parts about getting over a mental health problem are firstly accepting you have it and then discovering how you can pick yourself back up again. It can be easier than it seems, we can make an impossible task seem easy to solve simply by thinking about it in a different way.

I have touched on the prospect of putting yourself back together in a few blogs in this series, especially in my Rebuilding the Jigsaw blog. In this blog, https://sweeneysblog.com/2019/05/21/looking-into-male-mental-health-blog-6-rebuilding-the-jigsaw/, I go into depth about how there is always a way to put yourself back together but I feel like I can expand on it a little better in this blog.

Picking yourself back up is a task that I struggled a lot with when I went through a poor Mental Health phase. When I was in the mindset everything seemed so pointless and I couldn’t really see a way out. This mindset is a very dangerous one to be in as I was constantly thinking negatively, hence everything else that happened in my life was perceived in a more negative light to how it would usually be.

I can remember the days when I thought that I would never break through my problems and I used to think that they would consume me. What makes the matter worse is that in my head I was ashamed at myself for not having the strength or willpower to fix the mess that I had put myself in. This all ties back to what I was talking about when I mentioned your mindset earlier on.

My mindset at this time was very negative. The way that I approached life was all doom and gloom and in doing that I simply created more problems for myself. I eventually learnt to understand the fact that if I did not change my mindset then I would eventually break. After finally learning that I needed to change how I thought about things a new thought came to me, how does someone change their mindset?

This question had me stumped for a good number of weeks until I finally worked out what I was going to do. I first started to reduce my hours in work so that I had more time to do university work and time to relax. After this, I created a basic timetable, nothing too specific but a basic guide to what I should be doing every day.

From this point then I began to prioritise the work that I had to do off the volume and the due date. As I started to do this I could see that I had enough time to complete all of my work as long as I keep a cool head and relax. Even simply getting my university work back on track started to make me feel so much better about myself. After I had finished all the work then I used to schedule in extra time to fix any other problems that I was facing. This gave me the opportunity to simply think about university work when I was doing work and then think of how to solve my other problems when I had spare time.

Cutting down on unnecessary work hours and scheduling my time better made the world of difference when it came to changing my mindset. they allowed me to relax and to get myself out of the cycle of panic that I was constantly living in. This was one way that I found to get back up again, to keep on going.

There are a million different ways to get back up again, usually, it comes down to the person. As I say in the majority of these blogs and especially in the Jigsaw one mentioned above, all of these blogs come down to interpretation. If you use a different way to get yourself through a rough time and get back up again then that is just as valid as my way. Out of curiosity if you do use a different way to pick yourself back up then let me know in the comments below. The phrases getting back up and picking up the pieces/picking yourself up all mean the same thing. They are simply the words for when you rebuild yourself/ when you find a way to piece yourself back together again.

That is all I want to talk about in today’s blog, thank you all so much for reading! What do you all think of today’s blog? How do you pick yourself up? Do you always use the same way or does it depend on the situation? Leave your answers in the comments!

As mentioned at the start of this blog, the series will be going on hold for a little while. Even though I do still really enjoy writing the blogs for the series I feel like I need some more time to properly plan out where the series is going and how I am going to write the blogs for it. A new series called Stuttering in Mainstream Media will be replacing the usual spot where this series is until i can bring the series back again. I hope you all enjoy the series and keep reading the blogs!

Thanks again for reading. Let me know what you think – I appreciate all feedbcak be it positive or negative!

Sweeney’s Blogs

Any money donated here will be put back into the business. This can be through marketing campaigns, upgrades to plans or for setting up future events!

£5.00

James

Guest Blogs and Page Updates

Hello and Welcome to Sweeney’s Blogs!

Today’s blog is going to talk about Guest blogs as well as a few updates coming to the page. There have not been any guest blogs on my page yet but I am hoping to start publishing a few in the future. Guest blogs allow people other than myself the chance to post content on my page. Guest blogs are something that I am trying to encourage more now and I hope to see a few in the upcoming weeks.

There are lots of different ways that a guest blog can work. The first way is if get in touch with me about an idea for a blog that you want to see in the future. If you just want to give me the idea and then allow me to write the blog around that then you will be credited in the blog itself and I will do my best to work around the idea that has been presented.

Another way that guest blogs can work is if you write the blog by yourself and then send it to me. If people choose to do this way then I will just scan through the blog quickly to see if it is alright then will publish it as soon as I can. When scanning through the blog I will aim not to change anything, however, if there is a part that doesn’t look right or if it could be reworded a bit then I would get in touch with you and discuss that first.

I am also more than happy to sit down and work on writing a blog alongside someone if they have an idea and are not quite sure how to write it. This can be done in a number of ways. We could discuss the idea in depth and then develop a plan for you to write the blog off, you could make a plan and I could write the blog or we could just write the blog step by step ensuring that we are both happy at the end of each stage.

As you can see from some of the ideas above there are lots of ways that a guest blog can be written. If anyone does have an idea for a blog then please get in touch with me. You will be given credit for your work and if you want to could become a regular writer on the page.

During the past few weeks, I have been working on updating the sidebar for the page. I have reorganised the way that the sections are presented into an order that I think is good. There is a way for me to install a chat room like function for the page that will allow everyone to communicate with each other like they are in a chatroom. I wasn’t sure whether to add this function in yet or wait for a better time in the future. What does everyone think? Should I include the chatroom now or wait a little bit?

As well as this there will be some changes to the series that I write on the page soon. I will be pausing the Male Mental Health series after one or two more blogs and then starting up a new series talking about Stuttering in Mainstream Media. I want the Male Mental Health blogs to stay fresh and to have a real meaning behind them which is why I am putting the series on hold for a little while. I do not want to just write blogs for the sake of it as the blogs have to have a purpose and have to have a meaning behind them or else there is no point in even writing them.

I will probably be starting the Stuttering in Mainstream Media series in around two to three weeks, dependent on when the Male Mental Health series finishes. I am not sure on the length of the series yet as there are a lot of different things that I can talk about so we can discuss that in the future when the series is well underway.

I believe that is all I want to talk about in today’s blog! Thank you all for reading and I hope you enjoyed! Today’s blog was a bit different from my usual work but I do aim to do update blogs every so often. I am thinking of launching a new advertising campaign for the site too but am not quite sure how to do it. Let me know what type of advertising you think is best!

Thank you all for reading,

Sweeney’s Blogs

Any money donated here will be put back into the business. This can be through marketing campaigns, upgrades to plans or for setting up future events!

£5.00

James Sweeney

Looking into Male Mental Health – Blog 10: The Brave Face

Hello and Welcome to Sweeney’s Blogs!

Today’s blog is going to be the tenth blog in the Looking into Male Mental Health series and is going to be about The Brave Face. Putting on a brave face is a phrase that is commonly used in day to day life. In this blog, we are going to be taking a deeper look into this phrase and then taking a look at the real world implications that it can have.

The term “Put on a brave face” can have several different meanings. The Free Dictionary, https://idioms.thefreedictionary.com/put+on+a+brave+face, defines it as “to appear or make oneself seem more courageous, resolute or dauntless than one really feels”. I quite like this definition as it is easy to interpret and I believe that it defines the phrase quite well. I do have my own definition for the phrase which I think puts it in a more relatable light h however.

I like to define “put on a brave face” as a mask that we use to hide our real feelings. Even though this definition may seem very similar to the one written by The Free Dictionary, I feel like my definition encompasses a larger demographic. Like most pieces of work, however, it is all down to your personal preference. A lot of the blogs that I write do come down to personal interpretation. If you prefer a different definition to the two that I have written here that is completely fine, the points remain the same throughout the definitions, it is just the wording that changes.

When relating this to the world in general there are lots of different avenues you can take. You can apply this term to current world problems, politics, relationships or simply too personal life. The most common adaption of this phrase is when it is used in a personal way. It is very common that people put on a brave face when dealing with Mental Health problems.

It is very common for people or even society, in general, to turn a blind eye to problems like Mental Health simply due to lack of understanding or situational awareness. People often hide their problems and hope that they will go away with time. This style of coping does simply lead to an increase in the number of problems with no solution being found as your head is buried in the sand.

Unfortunately, people nowadays do actively try to avoid solving their problems. This can be caused by a number of different causes. Some of the problems that cause people to avoid solving their problems include lack of time available, fear of not being able to solve the problem, lack of resources available to fix the problem and many more. When people do put on a brave phrase it can often lead to an increase in the number of problems they face. This then triggers the Rollercoaster Effect that I mentioned in the fifth blog of this series, https://sweeneysblog.com/2019/05/14/looking-into-male-mental-health-blog-5-the-rollercoaster-theory/.

We are now going to take a brief look into how this phrase can directly link back to Male Mental health specifically.  Put on a brave face can easily be linked to Male Mental Health. Although I do bring it up a lot in this series I think that a large proportion of that can be linked back to male stereotypes that have been created by society. Men are painted as people who do not need to share their problems, they are meant to be people who solve everyone else’s problems including their own. These stereotypes do much more harm than good.

It is very easy to think to yourself that if you leave a problem for long enough then it will fix itself, this, however, is not the case. It takes a lot of courage to admit that you have a problem or to admit that you need help but when you do it can make life so much better. Trying to find help for your problems is an entity that is undervalued in modern day society. Sourcing help for your problems is almost like you are breaking the mask that you put on when you put on a brave face. Breaking the cycle is paramount to breaking the cycle and is the start of solving Mental Health problems.

That is all I want to talk about in today’s blog! What do you all think? Do you put on a brave face? Does it have a positive or negative effect on your life? How can we break the cycle of putting on a brave face? How do you think putting on a brave face relates to mental health? Let me know what you think in the comments!

Thank you all for reading! Let me know what you think! All feedback is appreciated – be it positive or negative! If you have a minute or two spare please leave a rating and review on our Facebook Page! I am thinking of launching a new advertising campaign soon, let me know what you think I should do!

Sweeney’s Blogs

Any money donated here will be put back into the business. This can be through marketing campaigns, upgrades to plans or for setting up future events!

£5.00

James

Stuttering in Mainstream Media – Potential New Series?

Hello and Welcome to Sweeney’s Blogs!

Today’s blog is going to talk over an idea I have for a new blog series that I am hoping to launch in a few weeks. If people do want to see this series then I will start creating plans for the series and then will launch it in a few weeks. At the minute I am planning to temporarily pause the Male Mental Health Series and launch this one.

Currently, I am finding to think of as many ideas for the Male Mental Health series compared to when I first started it and don’t want it to seem like I am just forcing out blogs as that’s not how I want my page to be. In my head now I am thinking that if I pause the series and launch this one for a few weeks then when I start to write more blogs for it they will seem fresher and will have better deeper meanings.

The topic of stuttering has always been a topic that is very close to me. I have had a stutter for as long as I remember and it has impacted my life in numerous ways. The true effects stuttering has on an individual is often overlooked in modern day society, which is a thing that I want to change. The actual effects that a stutter has on a person is much more than simply skin deep. Stuttering can lead to a lot of problems such as self-confidence, job position and social standing to name but a few.

This series would also not be the first time that stuttering has been brought up on my blog page. I talked about my stutter in regards to how a bully used it to bully me in the Personal Experience 1 blog of my Looking into Male Mental Health series. This can be accessed either through the Blogapedia page of my website or through the following link – https://sweeneysblog.com/2019/05/07/looking-into-male-mental-health-blog-4-personal-experience-1/. This blog helps tackle just one example of how a stutter can lead to you being bullied and how it can be used to really lower your self-confidence.

I also talked about having a stutter in one of my earlier blogs which revolved around a ‘Stuttering Solution’ that I created called Rhythmical Thinking. This blog, which can be found here: https://sweeneysblog.com/2019/02/07/rhythmical-thinking-a-stuttering-solution/, talks about a method I use to help reduce the number of times I stutter. The blog links in my history of playing in a brass band and how that helps me when controlling my stutter.

The series that I am thinking of launching, Stuttering in Mainstream Media, will build off the previous points and will talk a lot about how stutters are discussed directly in mainstream media. If the series does go ahead then I will be talking about some of the life stories of famous people, who you may or may not know who have a stutter, how they coped with it, how it may have held them back and the lesson we can take from their story.

I am hoping to look at acts who have auditioned on Talent shows who have a stutter and how it changes the way in which they perform. I will look directly on if having a stutter changed how they were judged in their respective competition, be it in a good way or a bad way. From this then we can analyse to see if we can learn from the people that go on these shows despite having a stutter and see if we can adapt the ways in which they handle themselves into our daily life. I have so many ideas for this series so if people do want to see it then I am more than happy to start planning it soon.

That is all I wanted to talk about in today’s blog! Thank you all for reading! What do you all think? Should I start a series on living with a Stutter? Should it be about living with a stutter in general? Should I cover how stutters are directly covered in Mainstream Media or specifically in one genre of a tv show? Let me know in the comments or via our Facebook Page.

I will be launching a poll on the pages Facebook page to see whether to do this series or not. If you have a minute or two spare then please vote in it, if there is no demand for it then I will not create the series. Whilst you are on the pages Facebook page please leave a quick rating and review, it really helps the page grow!

Thanks for reading and i hope you’ve enjoyed!

Sweeney’s Blogs

Any money donated here will be put back into the business. This can be through marketing campaigns, upgrades to plans or for setting up future events!

£5.00

James