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New Zealand Man Claims Speaking in an Irish Accent Cured His Lifelong Stutter

Nick Prosser, a 28-year-old man from Rotorua, in New Zealand, has been stuttering for as long as he can remember, but he recently discovered that speaking in an Irish accent makes his speech disorder disappear almost completely.

The young New Zealander claims he discovered the simple cure to his stutter completely by accident, while trying different accents with a friend, for fun. When he tried the Irish accent, both he and his friend were amazed that his pesky stutter virtually vanished. They were able to have a long conversation without him stuttering at all, which had never happened before. He just couldn’t believe that something so simple could be the cure to a problem that had seriously affected his self-confidence ever since he was a child.

Photo: Ryan McGuire/Pixabay

“I tried [the accent] and then next thing we are having a long conversation with no stuttering,” Prosser told the Rotorua Daily Post newspaper. “I was like ‘woah, you just helped me stop stuttering’. I couldn’t believe it. I had been to so many speech therapists and doctors and they never suggested this technique.”

Stuttering may not seem like the most serious problem a person could have, but the 28-year-old claims that it had always held him back during simple conversations and and even at his jobs. He doesn’t consider himself shy, but he was always frustrated that he sometimes opened his mouth to say something and the words just wouldn’t come out. However, now that he has discovered this easy trick, he is much more confident.

 

Interestingly, Nick has never been to to Ireland, but believes that speaking in an Irish accent comes naturally for him because of his mother, who comes from an Irish family. He suggests that people suffering from similar speech disorders try looking at their genealogy and attempt to speak in an accent associated to them. However, local speech specialist Annette Stock told the Daily Post that she had never heard about this technique, and that she would be surprised if it still worked in six months.

“We know as speech language therapists that singing certainly helps with people that have stutters but you can’t just go around singing in your everyday life,” Stock said. “I think that this is something that works for him and that’s fine. But in six months time if it is still working I would be saying ‘wow that’s amazing’.”

 

So why does the Irish accent make Prosser’s stutter disappear? No one knows for sure, but Rotorua barber Ants Haines, who has been cutting Nick’s hair for years, has an interesting theory: he claims that this way, the 28-year-old spends more time thinking how to pronounce the words, and that somehow helps.

“He is thinking of how he is going to pronounce it in an Irish accent [and] that stops him from stuttering,” Haines said. “And I think if it is working then roll with it, who cares?”

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