Rich Whincup
Rich Whincup
England

First Course:
Bournemouth, July 1999

I have had my stammer for as long as I can remember. My Mum says I used to stammer in my car seat...

I have had my stammer for as long as I can remember. My Mum says I used to stammer in my car seat... I first heard of the programme when an Aunty of mine taped a documentary which was on TV in 1997.

My stammer was terrible, minutes used to go by sometimes, without me being able to say a word. I had tried various speech therapies whilst at school, nothing had ever worked. 

I left home for a college in Birmingham in September 1998, and without school friends and family there to support me, I really struggled through the first 6 months of my Higher Education career.

I went to a McGuire open day in Bath, in March 1999, and saw recovering stammerers controlling their speech with great effect. 

I was amazed, and had to give it go. 

My first course was in Bournemouth, July 1999. Two words... Life Changing! I loved the whole experience, and really took on board what the Instructors and Coaches had to say. I opened my mind to something new and different. I have not looked back since.

Today, I am a Staff Trainer, Course Instructor and Primary Coach on the McGuire Programme and a very proud recovering stammerer. I am now living in Twekesbury, Glos and I am married to Vicki, who supports me through everything in life, and does not let me get away with any laziness in my speech. We have a baby boy, Thomas, who is bound for greatness. My family, and friends, both on the programme and fluent speakers, have supported me hugely over the years.

Without the McGuire Programme, I would not have achieved many of my ambitions. I now coach sport and I have given many speeches at conferences and schools, things that would not have been possible as a stammerer. The Programme is an inspiration and a way of life for me. I cannot speak highly enough of it, and all fluent speakers who have seen the difference in me would say the same.

To be honest, I am happy to have had a stammer. I have gained so much through, and since learning to control it. It has made me a stronger, happier person, and has taught me how to appreciate life in a way that I never thought possible, through freedom of speech.

Before the McGuire Programme - Disabled, scared, depressed, guilty, helpless non communicator with so much to give that I couldn't.

Now - Dad, husband, university lecturer, rugby coach, motivational speaker, course instructor, staff trainer.

Life is so much better for me now, it came be for you too.