International Day of Persons with Disabilities: Can you see me?

invisible-disability

I have a learning disability difference. You can’t see it, but it’s real.

I felt its sting when I was a child in school, when you asked me to read out loud, when you told me I’d never learn math, when you said I’d never go to university. As an adult, I see it every time I pick up a book, read a recipe, write an essay, fill out tax forms, drive my car or go for a job interview.

It hasn’t always been easy, but I have adapted.

The hardest part is how you see me – and how you don’t.

My disability difference is dyslexia, the most common learning disability difference in the world. It affects an estimated 15-20% of the population across every race, culture, class and gender.

And yet, dyslexia is largely unknown, unsupported and ignored. Some days, I feel we are invisible. Other days, I feel we are completely misunderstood.

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