Ryalls said Roberts developed unique ways to cope with her new voice. "She began to respond to people's constant questions about where in England she was from by asking, 'Where do you think I'm from?'" Regardless of the city named, Roberts would say the person was right.
"In some ways, her response showed she was beginning to accept the accent," Ryalls said. "It was an ingenious coping mechanism, but it also reveals that she had begun to resign herself to the change in her speech."
Although she started to cope with her accent, she avoided most social contact and eventually developed agoraphobia, a fear of open spaces. Roberts even started using a pseudonym, Tiffany Noell, because she was concerned about embarrassing her family. "She suffered greatly from some particularly unsympathetic people who did not understand her changed voice," Ryalls said.
Roberts said she wants people to know about this strange syndrome that can result from a stroke and hopes she can spare others the same alienation and misunderstanding she suffered.
"If I can bring notice to this condition, especially within the medical community, doctors may be able to help others who find themselves in my situation," Roberts said.