Superando Tartamudez
Jared Ballesteros
Torreón, México

First Course:
March 2016

I transformed my biggest weakness into my greatest strength.

My stutter started when I was around 11 and 12 years old, at first I took it as something normal, a scare that I had in my childhood and it even was something funny to me, at that age I didn’t give much importance to anything, I was the typical kid that was always smiling at all times, nothing and nobody could take away that sensation of happiness that little by little started to fade away.

As I grew up my condition grew as well, as I became more mature my stutter did too, it started to become a monster that I could no longer control. I became serious, very shy; I didn’t want people that didn’t know me know my open secret. My biggest fears were to present in class, introduce myself with new people, even saying a simple ‘Good morning’, it sounds easy but to me it was a huge challenge.

I went with specialists, language therapies, psychologists, I watched videos in the Internet, I tried a lot of methods so I could go back to how I was before. I reached a point where I hit rock bottom, I had a huge insecurity in me, the distortions, the blocks, freezes, and they reached a point where I couldn’t say my name, something I wish to nobody. After trying many solutions that were not helpful at all I watched on TV that they were talking about a programme to help people with that condition, called The McGuire Programme. After looking at it I immediately did my research on the Internet, I started looking videos of how people came in and how they came out, I was amazed and it was in that moment that I wanted to be part of that programme that today I see it as my best life decision.

My first course was in March 2016, in Torreon, Coahuila, Mexico. I felt very nervous, with a lot of doubts if this was really the solution that I was looking for.

My first day was something pretty hard; being in front of a lot of people sitting in a chair looking at a camera was the end and the beginning of a new way of life. As I was going through my first course I was realizing by myself that I already had control of my speech, that I could say what I wanted without a single block. One of the activities was talking on the phone, one of my biggest fears that when I was able to finish them I had the biggest joy in my face but there’s one more thing missing, the best part, the thing I’ll never forget. The day my first course finished I’ll always remember that I had the control of my speech, I was surprised of the eloquence I had when I spoke, when I spoke in front of everyone I remember that I never stopped smiling, I started to realize that the old Jared was back again, and when I spoke in front of the families and friends of everyone who participated in this programme they were shocked, some of them were my family members and when I finished speaking I let the tears fall down, they were tears of joy, of overcoming, those that I changed from teasing and criticism into congratulations and applause. I felt like a whole other person or that I was back to being the same one as I was years ago.

Coming out of my first course I made the commitment to keep improving to overcome my biggest challenges that were so hard for me to do, one of them was give interviews, I never imagined being in a radio show speaking and much less of the theme that I tried evading for so long and that now has became in my greatest reason to keep moving forward.

The challenging situations I don’t see them like before being that in this programme they taught me the necessary tools to be able to face this situations without fear or shame, I transformed my biggest weakness into my greatest strength.

If someone identifies with me, there’s a solution to take control of this condition, don’t worry because you’re not alone and there’s so much competent people to change your life just like they did with me.