What is Dyslexia?
Well according to Wikipedia, Dyslexia, a reading disorder, is a learning disability characterized by trouble with reading despite normal intelligence. It doesn’t seem like that big of a deal but for a person with this condition (mind you, it’s a condition and not a disease) things aren’t all that easy. Life as a dyslexic isn’t actually be pretty hard. Simple things like an ‘A’ are hard to understand and a game of catch can be the hardest thing you have ever done just because your mind can’t process how far away the ball is. Some parents are supportive and some just don’t understand why their child is such a trouble maker. I mean your mom just asked you to write down the numbers, why do you have to take hours to do it and stall her work?
In our country, I don’t think many people even knew that such a thing as dyslexia even existed until Taare Zameen Par happened, not even the dyslexic person themselves. It’s only a lucky few who have parents that will take them to doctors when their child will show difficulty in reading but for the rest of us, things just aren’t easy. A Dyslexic child is either an idiot or easily distracted by extracurricular activities. The reason why they can’t do well in studies is because they are always thinking about games, or so the parents think. It’s not always the parents fault either. Usually all the information a parent gets about their child’s education, especially when the child is young, is from the teacher. The teacher is the one who has most control over the child’s education and she of course knows best and while some teachers are very understanding, some can be rather mean. If the teacher is kind, the child has a somewhat easier life but if you’re stuck with a teacher who can’t understand why you can’t answer a simple question and gets annoyed by it, then you’re going to be labelled as an idiot and not just by teachers. The way a child is received by his or her peers often depends on the way the class teacher treats the child, so it can go either way from there.
Being a dyslexic child, I was lucky enough to be in a school where there were facilities to help students like me but that I didn’t have access to those facilities right from the start. I was diagnosed with Dyslexia when I was in the 2nd grade so before that I was the stupidest kid in my class. I wasn’t all that lucky when it came to the teachers that taught me either. They asked me what 2+2 was and all I gave them was a blank stare because honestly my mind hadn’t even processed the question before they lost their cool and threw me out of class. My mom had become accustomed to coming to school to meet a teacher or the principal and hear about what a bad child I had been. I wasn’t talkative nor did I have a bad behavior. I just couldn’t study like the rest. Since my teachers didn’t like me, neither did my classmates. I was an exile and whoever talked to me or tried to help me would be exiled as well. As if being exiled by classmates wasn’t bad enough, rumors were spread that I had an infectious disease so all must stay away from me. Who would have thought that five year old kids could be so cunning?
After my diagnosis, things changed for me since I was put it in a class which had five other students. We had one on one sessions with the teacher in charge and after a year I was back, studying with the rest of the students, like I never even had Dyslexia.
Well that was my little story and I think you get the idea of how things play out for dyslexic children. We can be in the best environment or the worst depending on the school. All we ask is for a little love, support and encouragement, that’s it.