Revised 2nd Edition
The Successful Stuttering Management Program (SSMP) is a comprehensive therapy program for adolescent and adult stutterers. Speech-language pathologists will find this program useful in settings such as public schools, university programs, speech clinics, hospitals and in private practice. Many well-motivated, sophisticated stutterers can implement this program on their own as the details of all procedures are thoroughly explained. It is a program which treats both the overt and covert aspects of the stuttering problem. In brief, it is a program which assists the stutterer in the following:
- reduction of word and situation fears,
- reduction/elimination of avoidance behaviors,
- elimination of outward secondary symptoms,
- improvement of attitude and self image, and
- providing management skills to assist in controlling outward stuttering.
The emphasis is on stuttering modification versus fluency shaping. The stutterer is encouraged to take complete responsibility for the successful management of his stuttering as the clinician can only guide, direct and encourage.
The program is designed for either individual or group therapy. The group (two or more) approach is strongly encouraged both for interest and mutual support which will grow during the program and will carry over to the post-therapy period of the stutterers’ lives.
The SSMP provides a practical, hands-on approach to stuttering therapy. It is a program of doing, not one of philosophizing about, theorizing about, nor debating about, stuttering. There is a myriad of information in those areas, and it is not our intent to add to that.
The underlying rationale for this program is that stuttering is a unique communication disorder of presently unknown origin or origins, and it cannot be cured – not unlike many other human ills. The stutterer can, however, learn to manage his stuttering and his speech so that he can communicate as a stutterer in any situation without undue discomfort to himself or his listener. The clinician will guide and execute this therapy program, but it is the responsibility of the stutterer to accept not only the fact that he is a stutterer, but also the responsibility for changing his way of communicating to one that is much more socially acceptable.
About the Authors
Dr. Dorvan Breitenfeldt received his B.S. and M.S. degrees in speech pathology from the University of Minnesota, his Ph.D. degree from Southern Illinois University and completed a one-year post-doctoral fellowship at Case Western University.
Dr. Breitenfeldt has given presentations on stuttering to numerous organizations including the American Speech and Hearing Association, the National Stuttering Association, the International Stuttering Association, the International Fluency Association, and Friends: The National Association of Young People Who Stutter.
As a life-long stutterer, Dr. Breitenfeldt’s passion has always been to improve the quality of stutterers’ lives and to develop qualified clinicians for the treatment of stuttering. He has received numerous honors and awards including election into the Hall of Fame of the National Stuttering Association and the Clinician of Distinction Award at a Congress of the International Fluency Association.
Delores Rustad Lorenz is a retired speech pathologist from the public school system in Spokane, Washington. She has worked as a supervisor for 18 Successful Stuttering Management Program Workshops. Her interests include both the child and adult stutterer. She has been a speaker on stuttering therapy at national and international conferences.