Deliberately Dyspraxic

Chat with others about dyspraxia and share your experiences.

Postby slinky_malinki » Tue Mar 22, 2005 7:36 pm

There have recently been instances of 'positive discrimination', whereby companies purposefully choose dyslexic applicants over non-dyslexics because they believe that they are investing in a creative, intuitive mind and an original outlook on life. More people are now willing to consider the plus points of specific learning differences, rather than exclusively focusing on the difficulties. I personally believe that positive discrimination is just as bad as the negative kind, but it may have interesting consequences for people with learning differences.

So, do you think that one day parents will hope to have a dyspraxic child? That people will celebrate if a teacher suggests the possibility of dyspraxia?

I ask this because of a question my special needs teacher put to me. She asked if I would accept a 'cure', were one to be made available to me. My response was, "No way. If I weren't dyspraxic, I don't think I would be able to write. My language ability would disintegrate." My answer surprised me, as it seemed to jump from my mouth without any premediation. It was as if, in some small secret part of me, I had always silently attributed my qualities to the presence of dyspraxia.

So, do you think one day in the not-so-distant future we can expect to see DYSPRAXICS WANTED hanging in the window of local job centres?
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Postby k9ruby » Tue Mar 22, 2005 9:05 pm

:D :o :D
W o W
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Postby WARTORIOUS » Wed Mar 23, 2005 12:03 am

So, do you think one day in the not-so-distant future we can expect to see DYSPRAXICS WANTED hanging in the window of local job centres?[QUOTE]

No, I personaley welcome the fact that companies can look on the bright side of something like Dyspraxia ;)
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Postby slinky_malinki » Wed Mar 23, 2005 10:54 am

But do you think companies will start to actively solicit dyspraxic workers?
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Postby Helen » Wed Mar 23, 2005 11:02 am

I think you have a good point, Vicky. 'Positive discrimination' (hate the term, but that's what they call it!) towards those with dyspraxia is a very real possibility. We all know on these boards that those who have dyspraxia and struggle in some areas are compenstaed by being very capable, gifted even, in others. In addition they have an empathy and understanding of human nature which has to be envied. Once the word is out and dyspraxia is well known, I believe some companies may well be placing ads to the tune of.....

<span style='color:red'>Do you have dyspraxia? If so, you may be the person we are looking for.......</span>
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Postby Matt » Wed Mar 23, 2005 9:33 pm

Wow, that's something that's never occurred to me. But, Vicky, yet again, you're absolutely right! I for one hope that one day, when dyspraxia is more well known, employers WILL recognise that dyspraxic's are very gifted in some areas, and will want to take advantage of that fact. "How long until that happens?", I hear you cry? Well, however long it takes to spread the word! :D
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Postby slinky_malinki » Wed Mar 23, 2005 10:49 pm

Ha! I wish my classmates shared your flattering view of me. (Then again, if they didn't insist that I am NOT always right, I would probably end up with a head the size of a hot-air balloon and would have to inch through doors sideways.)

It's brilliant that there are websites like this one to help raise awareness. I know I struggle to do it in person. When someone asks, "What is dyspraxia?" I never know where to start - there are so many different aspects of life that are coloured by it. I've taken to carrying a small customised leaflet around with me that explains my major problem areas - there is a section instructing passers-by on what to do if I start to panic in a sensory-intensive place - but explaining the condition in general is so difficult. The autistic spectrum is vast. The differences that lie on its fringes are so varied. Short of delivering hour-long lectures, educating people on this subject isn't easy.
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Postby Philip » Thu Mar 24, 2005 1:24 pm

A good topic brought up
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Postby SomeT1 » Fri Mar 25, 2005 11:07 pm

This is like one of those really philosophical questions, you know since I fount out about dyspraxia at the age of 19 and more than likely have it, because I have been living the last 19 years of my life not knowing I had dyspraxia it seems that people have always noticed I am different mostly in a good way because they see good things come out of me in my skills and outlook and they do not bother focusing on the bad points due to not knowing I have dyspraxia which is weird if you get what I mean its like some people only focus on the bad points about you if they think/know something is wrong with you. I also have a question for you, if a dyspraxic became a celebrity or a really rich powerful person would people see dyspraxia as a good thing or some sort of thing to follow?
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Postby slinky_malinki » Sat Mar 26, 2005 9:38 am

I experienced almost exactly the opposite. When I was undiagnosed, the words 'freak' and 'spastic' were as familiar to me as my own name. There have always been a few very valuable friends who have touchingly chosen other words - special, quirky, unique - but up until I received my diagnosis, I felt torn. I didn't know what to believe about myself. It was too easy to look at my stumbling handwriting and my equally skewed social 'performances' (because socialising is just like acting, when you consider) and think horrible things of myself. Discovering dyspraxia changed all that.

But I think you make a very good point about dyspraxic celebrities. My special needs centre is plastered with posters of famous dyslexic people, which carry captions like:

He struggled against the current.
SIR STEPHEN REDGRAVE - OLYMPIC MEDALLIST
Dyslexic

and

He wasn't such a bright spark when it came to reading and writing.
THOMAS ALVA EDISON - INVENTOR OF THE LIGHT BULB
Dyslexic

It wasn't long before I indignantly asked my special teacher where all the dyspraxic posters were. She at once rang up the Dyspraxia Foundation to see if they had produced any. The person on the other end of the phone informed her that two well-known celebrities are both dyspraxic and members of the Foundation, but confidentiality requirements prevented her from telling us their names.

I have since heard that one of them is the business tycoon Richard Branson, owner of the Virgin empire, though this of course may be an urban myth...
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Postby SomeT1 » Sat Mar 26, 2005 1:13 pm

Richard Branson, I have actually heard he is dyslexic, thats actually quite amazing information that two celebrities are dyspraxic. I am acting in a short film on Monday as an extra and the short film is being sent round loads of film festivals :D so who knows? lol
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Postby k9ruby » Sat Mar 26, 2005 4:39 pm

Bill Gates- Aspergers
Boss of virgin- dyslexic
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Postby slinky_malinki » Sat Mar 26, 2005 5:21 pm

I will look forward to seeing Matt taking the West End by storm and you appearing on the silver screen, SomeT! :D

And that could easily happen. Dramatic talent seems to be flourishing on these forums. Matt and Ruby in Chicken Shed, SomeT involved in films, myself a member of LAMDA...any more?

I personally incline to the view that Richard Branson is dyspraxic. As dyslexia is the better publicised of the two differences, a lot of people with dyspraxia have been misdiagnosed in the past. Any celebrity with a learning quirk is instantly placed under the dyslexic umbrella, simply because it is the only learning difficulty that almost everyone has heard of. I actually think that the BDA's photographic gallery of historical figures may contain a few misclassified faces - some of them definitely stand on the dyspraxic side of the fence!

But let's not get competitive...
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Postby SomeT1 » Sat Mar 26, 2005 8:03 pm

I aint actually going to be in that short film now because I will not be able to get the time off work, it was only a really small role anyway but I am not that bothered because I got an amazing feature film script in development, the only thing is I have trouble writing it due to getting easily distracted by loads of things, lol. I have all the notes though and pretty much the whole film planned out in my head so it should all work out eventually, the film may be about dyspraxia or may not I have not fully decided yet to whether to focus it around it.
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Postby slinky_malinki » Sat Mar 26, 2005 9:16 pm

Good luck with it. :)
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