I have a slight stutter. It comes and goes. It's worse if I'm talking to new people, or if I really know what I'm talking about and get overexcited. It doesn't help that I grew up in a household with 3 different dialects, none of which I was allowed to use in school. The English I spoke was learnt through a collection of British and American movies, heavy local accents from teachers, and metal songs that I could hardly understand. This will all seem trivial to the geniuses who know six languages, but I only knew two, and I had a stutter in both. When I tried to make sure I wasn't stuttering, I mumbled, and in the process 'What?' became my most heard day to day word.
But does that mean I don't express my feelings and opinions, or I keep my thoughts bottled up because of the ever dreaded 'What?'? Well, no. Over the years, I have come up with my own mechanism of pauses and thoughtful beard-stroking to make people understand me better, and it feels like my process worked. I think finding a voice is an ever evolving process, and that applies as much to generations and collectives as it does to individuals. I wonder if we could just wait and let that happen.
– Azmin Azran, Sub-editor, SHOUT