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Oblivious to reality

Posted Dec 03 2005 12:00am
PDS never stops surprising me. It is amazing just how complex humans are despite just being a bunch of cells made out of atoms. :-) Some days ago, I started with a draft for a new post called "Therapy results after 3 weeks". I did talk quite a bit about the therapy in my last posts, and people started asking me about the results. So I wanted to write this, admittedly not very positive statement
"Last month, I was writing about the Kassel Stuttering Therapy, both from the perspective of a patient and of a researcher trying to improve its efficacy. I also said that I was pretty fluent in the second and third week of the therapy, and was giving talks in front of 50 people or so. So I guess some of you would like to know how I am doing three weeks after therapy. Well, I think it is fair to say that the last three weeks have been a desaster speech-wise. The first week I had several difficult speaking situation asking the tax office to give me back money, being a traffic jam for 3 hours, explaining the dentist in a foreign language, negotiations of a business deal on the phone and so on. So I effectively completely lost it. The real problem is that once I loose it, I have far less control the next time, and I also just forget or postpone practising. Anyway, now I am back practising again and today I started with making short phone calls."

But now compare this statement to a discussion I recently had with my parents
"Parents: Can I ask you a question? You suddently speak much more fluently. What has happened?
Tom: What do you mean I speak more fluently? I dont think so.
Parents: Yes, you do. What have you done?
Tom: I also did the KST therapy again when I was in Kassel. But I dont think I speak more fluently.
Parents: Come on, Tom. You must be noticing that you have much less blocks and fillers. Why are you lying to us!
Tom: Eeehhh (I start stuttering again) Nnno, not really. I dont really notice this.
Parents: You are strange.."

Somehow those two statements do not really seem to fit well! On the one hand, I talk about the three weeks after being a desaster and they talk about me being much more fluent. Honestly, I did not realise that I had been much more fluent. I think both statements are true. I certainly was very dysfluent in some situations over the three weeks. I know this for sure, because I recorded the phone conversations and listened to them. But one the other hand, I have to believe my parent's statements that I have been much fluent, that is when I was talking to them. So I might well have been more fluent generally, but in very stressful situations dysfluent. The thing that puzzles me is my total ignorance of the fact that I speak more fluently generally. Why dont I realise this? I really must be strange.... :-)
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