An Older Man’s Tale of Dyslexia


  As an adult it can be harder to accept that you may have Dyslexia.  It may be that being diagnosed can explain why you have struggled all your life but it can also cause a lot of emotional upset. One of those emotional feelings can be anger and frustration because it had never been picked up and you may have felt that you have wasted all those years!  This is certainly one of the many feelings that come out during conversations with adult students in our advice consultations.  The feeling of not being able to ever learn at ‘my age’ and frustration of not knowing what to do next can be very demoralising.  However this is definitely not the case! 

The eldest person I have taught was a 78 year old man that had never been able to read or write and had left it to his wife to do the ‘paperwork and bills’.  His wife eventually suffered from dementia and was unable to continue to do the paperwork.  His children helped but what they could not help with and that his wife enjoyed was being read to.  He came for a chat and decided that he wanted to be able to read a book to his wife.  He chose a children’s book that his wife had always read to the grandchildren.  We started the journey together and over a quite short period of time he was able to read the book with confidence and, how he liked to put it, with flow, meaning that he could read it without stopping or stuttering over words he had not read before.

He went home and read this book to his wife every evening.  He said it was one of the nicest times of the day when she listened and he read! It just goes to show that you are never too old to learn.