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Do you tell people that you have dyscalculia?

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humiliation, and crying in math class
#1 Print Post
Posted on February 15 2010 05:34 PM

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Joined: 2010-02-08

Good morning, I have recently found this wonderful site. I am an older person (61) but the memories of terrible experiences in math in high school haunt me until this day, From 3rd grad on , I was horrible in math, By the time i was in high school, my freshman year, I had 2 tutors, It was pathetic. My high school teacher in modern math, used to run me out of the classroom, and call me stupid, I remember going into the bathroom and crying for most of the class, returned to pick up my book, Sometimes , i would quietly cry during the class when no one was looking,

To this day, I have fears with math, I am a college graduate who did well in college. However the math deficiency prevented me from fulfilling my dream of becoming a nurse , as I needed math to get in, I am an intelligent woman, but the math thing is the worst thorn in my side, Recently, i have been thinking of graduate school, for working in gero/psych, and of course the lightbulb went off, (gre's, math, yuck,)

I have alot of anger for the teacher who was so abusive to me, I have never dealt with it, but now I feel I am not alone , being on the boards with others,

I avoided friends who knew me in the class and always felt dumb when seeing them, Sad but true,

AT this point, I would like to be tested, but I think I may be too old, opinions would be appreciated, thanks,
#2 Print Post
Posted on February 15 2010 05:57 PM

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Joined: 2008-12-31

oh no, I don't think you're "too old"! I say, go for it! If in U.S., you can check out Learning Disabilities Assoc. America and National Center for Learning Disabilities for resources in your state or region; also check site which is BC <Canada> based but could be useful. Also local vocational rehab. services, literacy/adult tutoring services, independent living centers and various other places are all possible sources of where you might go to possibly find people who could further direct you in your area. Many times these kinds of places are interconnected - clients may be receiving services at more than one kind of agency; tutors/social service providers may have backgrounds in a variety of services and supports or may have contacts at other facilities, etc.

I am sorry to read of your bad memories; I have them too. And jobs and other things I have done have been affected in a variety of ways.But now I am proud of who I am and do not hide my LD. I am in my 30's.
Best Wishes Smile
#3 Print Post
Posted on February 15 2010 08:45 PM

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Posts: 319

Joined: 2009-03-10

Hello from Denmark!

If you want to get a test by all means do it - I agree with Rottie, you're not too old..
I'm in my forties and got my test about 2 months ago and it's probably the best thing I ever did for myself.
Not only did the test prove to me that I am an intelligent woman (which I've doubted so many times in my life), it also comfirmed that I do in fact have an LD and can't help doing all those weird and sometimes very embarrassing things that are apparently part of being me.
Now the real battle begins - getting people to understand that not being able to do maths is only a fraction of what makes my life difficult, but I have decided to keep fighting.

For some strange reason, my math teacher for four years must have understood something was wrong and somehow "protected" me.
When he left the school, we had a new teacher and that's when things started to go horribly wrong and I was put in the "stupid" class with children that I had nothing in common with.
I haven't seen my classmates for nearly 30 years and I have no intention of ever meeting them again. They made my life miserable and "helped" me get rid of any self confidence I may have had when I started school so I understand your feelings toward school..

This is indeed a wonderful site - it's like finding long lost family and I love it here.

I hope my slightly confusing post has been just a bit helpful to you.
I'm a violin so stop trying to make me sound like a piano!!

Dyscalculia doesn't bother me as much as all the nasty accessories that came with it
#4 Print Post
Posted on February 15 2010 11:46 PM

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Posts: 6322

Joined: 2008-05-25

Dear bronxbaker,
You are definitely not too old to get tested. You have no idea the satisfaction that it can give you, when you have a disability, to have the documentation stating that this is the case. Not only that, but the testing and the Report, when done correctly, will actually narrow down that disability to the 'reasons' or 'areas' where you have the deficiency. Once you have that, all of your 'reflexions' on those distressing events --- milestones --- in your life, will have 'meaning'. It will all make sense. And, I find that, as I get over blaming myself for what I couldn't do any better at, the blame for much of my suffering goes to where it more appropriately belongs,... usually to a simply unfeeling, rude person who should never have held their position of authority to begin with. After that realization, a certain peace settles in. Yes, do that for yourself, if it isn't too much of a financial burden. Do get tested. - jus'
#5 Print Post
Posted on February 07 2011 12:23 AM

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Posts: 6

Joined: 2011-01-25

I too have experienced humiliation as a result of my dyscalculia. When I was in primary school (elementary to all you Americans out there) all the other kids seemed to have little difficulty in picking up multiplication. I however, just could not get to grips with it and so my teacher at the time (who was also a friend of my mother) offered some extra help. Basically, I had to go in to school extra early every Monday morning where my teacher would make me recite the multiplication tables over and over until I could get them right. For example, once I had mastered the 3 times table I then had to go on to the 4 times table and so on. It didn't really work though because as soon as we moved on to the next one I completely forgot the one before. I still can't do it to this day.
I knew that my teacher and my mother thought they were helping me out but they couldn't have been less help if they tried. Having to go to school an hour earlier than all the other kids was difficult to explain especially because I would already be in class after having missed morning playtime by the time they all filed in . But once they found out that the reason why I had to go in early the floodgates opened and I was taunted relentlessly for being stupid or pathetic and worst of all, being called a spastic - a popular term of abuse in the early 1980's for those deemed to be of lower intelligence.
I remained angry at that teacher for years, right up until I was diagnosed with dyscalculia. Now of course I realise that she wasn't to know I was dyscalculic, not much was known about it in the teaching profession at the time, and that she genuinely wanted to help. But the experience of the bullying which went on right up until I left school at 16 has never left me and still affects me to this day.
I just hope that the dyscalculic kids of today are diagnosed sooner and treated with bit a bit more tact and understanding than I was so that being bullied as a result of having dyscalculia becomes a thing of the past.
#6 Print Post
Posted on February 07 2011 02:00 AM

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Posts: 6322

Joined: 2008-05-25

Dear Matty 1975,
I can certainly see how those elements came together to put you in a miserable situation. I'm so sorry for the abuse you suffered, and also that it culminated in your leaving school at 16. I was a 'teacher's aide' at an elementary school. When I assisted the third grade teacher (kids about 8 years old), she gave them little slips of paper with times tables on them,... once quiz would be only over 4's,... another day, the quiz slips were over the 5's. She was a cheerful teacher, always thinking of her students, even giving us all popcorn every day,... sometimes twice a day. There was nothing at all 'sinister' about this teacher. And yet, I was 'oh so glad' that, as a teacher's aide, I didn't have to take those cute little quizzes. She would tell the students that 'one minute' was plenty of time to do the quizzes 'if' they knew that information. And it was,... 'if' they knew that information. This was prior to my finding out about dyscalculia. I'm sure that this teacher would have been one of those 'enlightened' individuals who, knowing about dyscalculia, would have gone out of her way not to cause any embarrassment to a student with MLD. What a shame that 'ignorance' has caused so much heartache to so many.

I'm sorry that I've forgotten the rest of your story. Have you been tested now? And have you returned to finish your High School studies? (I don't know what the UK equivalent of High School is.) - jus'
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