In recent months I have spoken to a number of people with dyslexia.
One common aspect of our conversations has intrigued me. The tension that is created between a need for some support, balanced with a desire not to be marked out as different. I want some help, but I don’t want to be seen to want help.
Those I have spoken to have talked of their shame. A sense that in some way they are inadequate. Unable to do things that others find straightforward. Many hide their dyslexia for this reason. Preferring to find their own coping mechanisms. Choosing roles and work where the challenges arising from their dyslexia aren’t exposed.
Whilst my dyslexic confidants have shared their fear of judgement, their desire to hide their ‘condition’, they have also shared heart wrenching stories of the efforts required to cope. To stay afloat. Many are desperate for some simple supports.
The reality here of course is that these dyslexic individuals have other strengths, other capabilities which are more developed and stronger than their non-dyslexic colleagues. Just as with any human being, we are all different. All unique.
We all hide too.
Sometimes we hide a part of ourselves from those around us. Often we hide a part of ourselves from ourselves. Yet we think that the hiding is hidden.
Honesty and truth seldom bring blame, judgement, criticism. When they do, it is those criticising, judging, blaming who are the individuals who are really hiding. Hiding behind judgement, criticism and blame.
We need to come out of the shadows.
To learn to be, in all our unique glory.
To stop hiding.
image by: Sally Green