Dealing With Speech Disorder: Emily Blunt Says, 'A Stutter Can Be Like A Straitjacket'

Sarah Myles

While the experience of those who have a severe stutter is not something that tends to get a lot of traction with the world's press, actress Emily Blunt recently highlighted the issue. In the past decade, the movie star has shown herself to be more than capable of holding her own stutter on the big screen opposite everybody from Meryl Streep (The Devil Wears Prada) to Tom Cruise (Edge Of Tomorrow), earning an abundance of awards in the process. Now that she is hitting the promotional trail in support of her latest film, Into The Woods, Blunt has taken the opportunity to discuss the speech disorder that once hindered her progress.

Emily Blunt

Speaking to NPR as part of its All Things Considered series, the actress described the way in which her stutter manifested, and the impact it had on her ability to communicate.

"It sort of started to dominate my speech by the time I was about 7 or 8. And then, I think, honestly, got to its most prominent point when I was about 12 or 13. Kids can be so merciless, can't they? Most of them speak so fluently and they can't possibly understand why you can't."

Emily Blunt explained the way in which those misperceptions affected her own treatment.

"The misdiagnosis [was] that I was a tense child, and I wasn't. I was desperate to speak. I wanted everything, I didn't want to miss anything, and I felt like I was missing out. So what I was, more than anything, was just immensely frustrated. A stutter can be like a straitjacket. I struggled with vowels, so 'Emily' was like the depths of hell for me."
"There seem to be subtle differences in how well we hold onto the sounds in a word before speaking. One idea of stuttering is that the speech plan that has to be put together has to be complete prior to speaking, and if you're slow putting together all of the sounds of a word, then what you have at the time of speaking is incomplete."
"[It was] just extraordinary that somebody who is not a stutterer would have the kind of insight to say, 'Be somebody else. Remove yourself and try it.'"
"I spoke fluently for the first time in a long time, doing a stupid Northern accent – that helped me. To get through a whole play and not trip up once – I think it was probably more emotional for my Mom who watched. I think that was huge."

"I think I get a little bit overwhelmed if I think about the odds of this not working out. I'm someone who never thought I would end up in a career where I had to speak fluently. And here I am."

"I think I get a little bit overwhelmed if I think about the odds of this not working out. I'm someone who never thought I would end up in a career where I had to speak fluently. And here I am."

[Image via hotcelebrityemmastone.blogspot.com]

ALL CONTENT © 2008 - 2021 THE INQUISITR.