A – Z of Living with Dyspraxia R is for

A – Z of Living with Dyspraxia R is for

A - Z of Living with Dyspraxia R is for

A – Z of Living with Dyspraxia R is for

R – R is for Rejection

As an adult living with dyspraxia you might find you have come away from certain situations and experiences with a sense of rejection. It could be an interview, a moment in the classroom, in the workplace at home with family or friends.

The world was not designed with dyspraxia in mind. Quite the opposite. The world is tailor-made for people with a certain standard of ability in a few particular areas. This is changing, surely but slowly. dyspraxic’s should always keep this mind when dealing with a sense of rejection or alienation. The world is designed for

Dyspraxics should always keep this mind when dealing with a sense of rejection or alienation. The world is designed for non-dyspraxic’s and people without neurological conditions.

Feeling rejected

A sense of rejection may come in the form of a job interview in which you were unsuccessful in getting the job. Or it could come in the form of participating in a social event such as a game of darts and be noticeably poorer at it than your peers. (requires hand eye coordination)

With the two examples, an adult living with dyspraxia may get the same sense of rejection but for very different reasons.

In my view, it is an almost like a case of there being direct and indirect causes of feeling rejection as an adult living with dyspraxia.

Direct causes

An example of a direct cause of rejection when living with dyspraxia is not being successful in a job interview and the reason provided being that they are unable to provide you with the support you need.

Indirect causes

A social setting in which time is spent with friends and even close family can present its self as an indirect cause of rejection when living with dyspraxia.

That is because of it easy for a person living with dyspraxia to feel rejected if they feel that their needs are not being taken into account. Of course, that is true of everyone but when living with dyspraxia a person may need support in areas that friends and family have simply not considered.

Overview

Everybody, no matter if they have dyspraxia or anything else, has to deal with rejection as various points throughout life; and all have to learn how to deal with it in their own way.

R is for rejection because when living with dyspraxia having a sense of rejection is a common occurrence.

 

 

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A – Z of Living with Dyspraxia Q is for Questions about Dyspraxia

Q is for Questions about dyspraxia

Q is for Questions about dyspraxia

Q is for Questions about dyspraxia

A – Z of Living with Dyspraxia Q is for Questions about dyspraxia

*Some information provided by the Dyspraxia Foundation

When living with the dyspraxia one of the biggest challenges faced is the questions about it. I like to think I am getting better at describing what it is, the Dyspraxia Foundation certainly help on that front; but when questions arise, it can cause anxiety and confusion and not just for the dyspraxic involved.

With that in mind, I thought it would be good to answer some of those burning questions for those not quite in the know.

What is dyspraxia?

Dyspraxia is a lifelong neurological condition that affects adults and children. It affects learning but not exclusively. It is a common disorder affecting fine/gross motor skills. It is also known as Developmental Coordination Disorder.

How many people have dyspraxia?

An estimated 5% of the population are affected, 2% severely.

So that is by my calculation over 3 million people living with dyspraxia in the UK, and just over a million of those could have severe dyspraxic tendencies.

That’s enough to sell out the Anthony Joshua fight 34.4 times.

Is there a cure for dyspraxia?

No, but with adjustments and support people living with dyspraxia are fully capable of living independent lives.

Is dyspraxia a learning difficulty/disability?

Although dyspraxia does affect learning and a learning environment can often be the first place dyspraxia manifests itself, dyspraxia can affect all aspects of a person’s life not exclusively learning.

Is dyspraxia like dyslexia?

Although dyspraxia may occur in isolation, it is common that people living with dyspraxia have overlapping conditions. Frequently sufferers of dyspraxia live with other conditions that coexist with dyspraxia. These are wide ranging from ADHD and Autism to language disorders as well as social, emotional and behavioural impairments.

Co-occurring conditions can have a serious negative impact on daily life.

Is dyspraxia a form of brain damage?

No, although dyspraxic symptoms could be confused with symptoms of a brain injury and dyspraxia in some case can occur from a brain injury, dyspraxia is not brain damage.

Dyspraxia is separate from other motor disorders such as cerebral palsy and occurs across a range of intellectual abilities.

Dyspraxia is a neurological condition or disorder of the nervous system.

Q is for Question about dyspraxia because the more questions that are asked about it, the better dyspraxia and its effects will be better understood.

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A – Z of Living with Dyspraixa P is For

A – Z of Living with Dyspraxia P is For

P is for Persistent

If you have to be anything at all when living with dyspraxia it is persistent.

That is why

P is for Persistent. Day to day things such as using a knife and fork or making a cup of tea can require a dyspraxic brain more energy to process. That applies to every aspect of life.

So being awake is sometimes a challenge. In many instances when living with dyspraxia, persistence is key with most daily tasks. It requires more energy for a dyspraxic to perform a basic task than it does for a non dyspraxic and if that task requires motor coordination or fine or even gross motor skills then persistence is required.

Fortunately, people living with dyspraxia tend to have persistence by the bundle and are able to develop coping mechanisms that enable them to complete a task that living with dyspraxia can make difficult.

And is not just when coping with dyspraxia that dyspraxic’s are persistent just ask anyone who has had the pleasure of teaching one or living with one.

P is for Persistence because living with dyspraxia requires persistence for those with dyspraxia and those around them.

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A – Z of Living with Dyspraxia O is for Optimistic

A – Z of Living with Dyspraxia O is for Optimistic A - Z of Living with Dyspraxia O is for Optimistic

O is for Optimistic

When living with dyspraxia it is easy to become dejected and isolated and to concentrate on the negative aspects of living with dyspraxia. People with dyspraxia can also find it easy (not always) to highlight the positive.

That is why the A – Z of Living with Dyspraxia O is for Optimistic. That’s because despite any challenges the majority of people with dyspraxia or driven and determined and in turn are optimistic.

When living with dyspraxia it is not uncommon to suffer from depression and anxiety, two conditions that in a particular environment, can be crippling, but when living with dyspraxia every cloud has a silver lining.

A word of warning, however, when living with dyspraxia a dyspraxic person should be careful not to get too high when optimistic because a sudden tumble can lead to a sensation of rejection or isolation.

Concentrate on the positive aspects of your life and the things you’re good at and enjoy doing. Bare in mind your weakness but always remind your strengths and play to them.

If you are doing what you’re good at it is near impossible not to be optimistic about life.

O is for Optimistic because despite the negativity people living with dyspraxia might feel they can also be eternally optimistic.

 

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A – Z of Living with Dyspraxia N is for

A – Z of Living with Dyspraxia N is for   A - Z of Living with Dyspraxia N is for

N is for Neurological condition/disorder

Often know as a learning disability dyspraxia is better described as a lifelong neurological condition or disorder.

A neurological condition or disorder is any disorder of the nervous system, a neurological disorder can manifest many symptoms such as muscle weakness and poor coordination.

Not brain damage

Dyspraxia, which affects patterns or sequences of movements is not Brain damage but brain dysfunction.

A person living with dyspraxia is born with dyspraxia but it possible to develop dyspraxia through sustaining brain injuries or from suffering a stroke.

More than a learning disability or difficulty

Like other conditions such as dyslexia and ADHD, dyspraxia is often referred to as a learning disability but it is more than that.

Although the impact of these conditions in a learning environment, for example, can often be huge and highly evident, that is not the only place they manifest themselves.

The learning environment is one where there is focus on, well, learning and dyspraxic symptoms will magnify in a learning environment if support is not provided.

I write this from the perspective of an adult and am relating it mainly to my university education, but the principle applies throughout education and throughout life.

Why I prefer Neurological condition or neuro diverse

When talking about dyspraxia I try to maintain a habit of calling it or referring to it has an NC or by saying that I am ND. (We are all Neurodiverse though) Either way is better than calling dyspraxia a learning disability. I think this for two reasons.

First, because I think the word disability is negative and has a stigma attached to it that is hard to loosen. The second reason being, that to call it a ‘learning disability’ is to oversimplify it and imply that it affects only learning. Which is simply not the case.

A neurological condition or disorder affects a person all of the time not just some of it. Sure, in a relaxed environment under no pressure, a disorder may not present many issues, but it is still present,

N is for Neurological condition because, in my opinion, it is a better label to give dyspraxia than learning disability or difficulty.

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A – Z of Living with Dyspraxia M is For

A – Z of Living with Dyspraxia M is For          A - Z of Living with Dyspraxia M is For

M is for motor coordination

Did you see the dyspraxic catch the ball?

Probably not.

Well, I have to contradict myself there, I am quite good at catching, especially for a dyspraxic. I put that down to practice and anticipation because when it comes to throwing I am terrible.

What is motor coordination?

According to Wiki motor co-ordination is a combination of spatial movements and physical parameters, and motor coordination occurs when, for example, several body parts or limbs move simultaneously in an efficient and smooth manner towards an intended goal.

That is all good and well for the majority of the population but when living with dyspraxia, it is common for people to have poor motor coordination, resulting in ‘clumsiness’.

Walking in a straight line without tripping is an achievement some days and other days just a pipe dream. Please don’t underestimate how difficult it can be to stay upright and mobile as a person living with dyspraxia.

No complaints here, not many anyway.

I would like to make clear that this is not a complaint. I should put that as a disclaimer, because despite the challenges faced as an adult living with dyspraxia, with fine and gross motor skills; I am grateful to be healthy.

It is funny most of the time, there have been a few concussions that I would have preferred to avoid but on the whole, the bumps, trips and slips have been the source of a good laugh.

Playing darts is a laugh. Just ask my friends. I was accused of trying to break the board because I throwing the darts so hard.

Motor co-ordination can also cause issues in the kitchen, which I have documented. It is probably one of the hardest things about cooking with dyspraxia because the better your motor co-ordination is, the easier it will be for you to cut, peel and chop things in preparation.

M is for motor coordination because not everyone appreciates how much affect it has on our day to day Life, especially when it comes to people living with dyspraxia.

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A – Z of Living with Dyspraxia L is for

AZ of Living with Dyspraxia L is for


A - Z of Living with dyspraxia L is for

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A – Z of Living with Dyspraxia K is for

 

A - Z of Living with Dyspraxia K is forA – Z of Living with Dyspraxia K is for

The A – Z is kicking on with a little help with some dyspraxic friends and I kindly present the letter K in the A- Z of living with dyspraxia.

K is for Knowledge

Is was stuck on this for a while so I popped a question into one of the support groups and got plenty of suggestions. Knowledge was one that kept rearing its head so that’s what I decided,

What it got a kick (boot)

Suggestions were a plenty, kinesthesis (ability to sense the use of limbs without the use of the five sense or a lack of ability in the case of dyspraxia.)

Knots – the tying and untying of. Due to fine motor skills issues, many dyspraxics might struggle to untie a tight knot or even a lose one and the same can be said for tying knots, such as shoe laces or ties.

Kicking a ball – something I hope I cover with football

Keeping a routine – something that can help people living with dyspraxia cope with dyspraxia and counter some dyspraxia related issues.

Knocking things over – I am sure ever dyspraxia has a broken cup or two in the cupboard.

Kind and caring – dyspraxics are often known to be sensitive.

Knowing you did your best – no matter how hard a dyspraxic might try, when living with dyspraxia there is always a sense of underachievement.

Keeping positive – see A is for attitude

Kitchen etiquette and Knives – As this is the dyspraxic chef, I think I will make a separate post for these.

I feel the biggest challenge people living with dyspraxia face is people’s lack of knowledge.

I am confident however that awareness is growing and a lot of that growth is down to dyspraxic’s themselves, this blog post is the perfect example, I was stuck and an army of dyspraxic’s bombarded me with suggestions.

Thank you

So many thanks for the suggestions, all your help and support is greatly appreciated.

K is for Knowledge because knowledge about dyspraxia is still thin on the ground. The more awareness of dyspraxia that friends, peers, colleagues, teachers, support workers have about dyspraxia; the easy life will be for dyspraxic’s and those around them

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A – Z of Living with Dyspraxia J is for

A - Z of Living with Dyspraxia J is for

A- Z of Living with Dyspraxia J is for

The A – Z of living with dyspraxia is coming along nicely, up next is the letter J and J is for Junior school.

  J is for Junior school

Known by other names such as Primary school or lower school J is for junior school because it is there when a person living with dyspraxia might first display tendencies of dyspraxia.

It is a crucial stage in any child’s life and if dyspraxia can be detected and start to be understood at an early age, then it will help the child living with dyspraxia to develop a coping mechanism and make better life choices, due to being better informed about themselves and dyspraxia.

My own experience was as is everyone’s, unique, it may share certain aspects that other dyspraxic’s and other people can relate to, but my story is unique, and so is yours.

The Good, the Bad and the Clumsy

If you are a child living with dyspraxia school can be hard but it can also be good, I made friends, friends I have to this day. Junior school doesn’t last forever although it can feel that way for a child living with dyspraxia. falling over, unable to tie laces and ties, being terrible at sports day and PE.

But there was plenty of good, it is at junior school I discovered my love of writing and conquered learning to swim and ride a bike.

At the other end of the scale there was bullying, fighting, isolation, assessments, test, attempts to take me from mainstream school to me forming a deep resentment and mistrust of teachers (not all of them, I can smell a good one a mile away), rejection, failure and then supposed help.

A complete lack of understanding led to a disrupted Primary education and I feel that I missed on on very basic developments, that have held me back at certain times.

Glancing back but looking forward

On reflection, the root of all the problems at school was that they didn’t know how to support me. An issue I still face today.

If you are a child living with dyspraxia school can be hard but it can also be good, I made friends, friends I have to this day. Junior school doesn’t last forever although it can feel that way for a child living with dyspraxia.

I harbour some memories that are tough to flick though but they are a part of who I am, for good or bad.

For a parent of a child with dyspraxia I would say, don’t underestimate the impact of those formative years but don’t pressure yourself too much, your dyspraxic child is probably more resilient than you think.

J is for junior school because Junior school has a massive impact on the lives of children living with dyspraxia.

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A – Z of Living with Dyspraxia I is for Isolation

 

A – Z  of living with dyspraxia I is for Isolation

For adults and children living with dyspraxia feeling isolated is a common occurrence. I state that from my own experience but also from the numerous statements left on support groups that I am a member of.

It does not only affect social situations but in every aspect of everyday life. When living with dyspraxia you may encounter many days to day interactions that you may have difficulty in completing.

It can be a good thing

Being isolated can sometimes be a positive thing. As a person living with dyspraxia, it is very easy to become overwhelmed in many situations. This it could be argued is due to having issues with process information and sensory issues. So a little time alone can sometimes be just thing you need as a person with dyspraxia, to take a moment and process all the information that you need.

On the flip side

Some isolation or alone time can be a good thing but too much of a good thing can be a bad thing. It is easy to get into the habit of being alone. As an adult with dyspraxia, I sometimes feel that I want nothing more than to climb into a giant cushioned box and sleep. (yes, I realise that sounds like a coffin, but that is not what I meant.) But as soon as I am in good company I realise how much I hate being alone.

I is for Isolated beacuse for adults and childern living with dyspraxia can feel isolated at any moment.

 

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