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Should I tell my 8 ds that he is dyslexic?

(27 Posts)
billyog Thu 05-Feb-15 13:26:52

On one hand it would explain to him why he has difficultly with his literacy and why he sees the SEN teacher once a week (alto he doesn't know that's her title but he does know that he's getting extra help and sometimes claims it's because he's stupid sad
However, I fear it might label him too early and also that he may use it as an excuse to give up! My father always told us we'd never be good at maths and as I result, I stopped trying and although I agree I doubt I'd ever have become a mathematician, I think I could have done better if I'd tried harder.
Parents of dyslexic kids of a similar age: do your children know? Your views on this matter would be greatly received

kelda Thu 05-Feb-15 13:30:39

It's not a label. It's a diagnosis.

I have made sure my son knew his diagnosis of verbal dyspraxia as soon as he could understand. Part of the benefit of having a real diagnosis is to avoid the negative connotations of labels such as lazy, stupid etc.

icklekid Thu 05-Feb-15 13:40:10

I was diagnosed at 12, I actually took it quite badly and got upset. I never used it as an excuse but by then had developed coping strategies. I used it more as an I'm not going to let it stop me achieving what I want to achieve motivator. I think it would have been worse if my parents had known before and not told me. Being dyslexic can mean using different strategies help and knowing that can help your ds take that on and use it to support himself

Elysianfields Thu 05-Feb-15 14:46:22

Yes I would. My DS1 is dyslexic and he was delighted when we told him - he was happy he had an issue he could work on and that he was just different, because up to then he felt no one thought he was trying hard enough.

He was about 8 then too

orangepudding Thu 05-Feb-15 14:50:08

My DS is six and so far I have explained to him he has verbal dyspraxia so he can understand why he sounds different and finds so things difficult.
He is currently being tested for dyslexia, if he is I will tell him so he doesn't feel stupid just understands why things are more difficult and he will get help.

paisley256 Thu 05-Feb-15 14:55:35

My son was relieved when he was diagnosed. Before that he always felt stupid and was labelled lazy at school.

zerosuitsamus Thu 05-Feb-15 14:56:13

I would definitely say or else he might grow up thinking he is stupid and incapable of doing anything.

SconeRhymesWithGone Thu 05-Feb-15 15:03:01

We told our son as soon as we knew for sure, which was when he was 9. And we have always said "you have dyslexia" not " you are dyslexic." It should not be used as a label.

I can't imagine how we would have managed without him knowing; it helped him understand why he was getting specialized teaching and it helped him better understand the strategies he needed to apply.

FWIW, he's in his thirties now and a happy, successful man with whom we have a close relationship.

billyog Thu 05-Feb-15 16:15:26

Thanks for your feedback and the consensus corresponds with my gut feeling. His diagnosis was a bit wooly to be honest. The senco did an assessment which he passed but then when she looked more closely at his school work she diagnosed dyslexia on the back of that. I thought it strange that he managed to pass an assessment used to diagnose dyslexia but then got diagnosed anyway. It's not as black and white as I thought I suppose. I spoke to her today and she said she can confidently say he is dyslexic. She seemed very capable and experienced. Just want to be sure he is before I tell. Wonder if I should get another assessment done? How did your children get diagnosed? Someone suggested dyslexia society but I think it's rather expensive?

orangepudding Thu 05-Feb-15 17:37:52

In my county there are SpLD bases which specialist teachers work from. Each base is attached to a number of schools.
The teachers assess and provide support for pupils from schools they attached to.
I don't think a diagnosis from the SENCo would be recognised officially in my area.
SEN seems to work differently in every borough/county council!

billyog Thu 05-Feb-15 18:33:22

That's interesting orangepudding. She did say something about the local authority and that he wouldn't have got the diagnosis under their guidelines! Where can I get a definitive, reliable diagnosis?

PriscillaQueenofDesserts Thu 05-Feb-15 19:28:39

Watching with interest!

I thought only an ed psych could formally diagnose? And that not all private assessments are deemed "worthy" by the LA. Am new to this myself though; DS is showing dyslexic tendencies after screening, but no idea yet whether full assessment is necessary.

orangepudding Thu 05-Feb-15 21:28:30

My DS was assessed by the county Ed Pysch, she said the county didn't allow her to diagnose dyslexia.

PriscillaQueenofDesserts Thu 05-Feb-15 22:12:45


VivaLeBeaver Thu 05-Feb-15 22:18:21

Ds was diagnosed when she was 7yo by an ed psych. She was only just dyslexic. She never had any extra help at school, etc and we didn't tell her until she went to secondary school.

Knowing dd's character I was concerned she would just chuck the towel in and give up at school work.

I think if my dc were claiming they were stupid I would tell them now.

Canshopwillshop Thu 05-Feb-15 22:25:44

My 8 year old DS has been flagged up as 'at risk' for dyslexia but I've been told that they won't diagnose it at this stage as his difficulties could be developmental rather than anything else. He has been diagnosed already with dyspraxia and I know dyslexia is linked but we will have to wait and see.

SconeRhymesWithGone Thu 05-Feb-15 23:13:46

I'm in the States, and it was over 20 years ago, but my recollection is that the initial formal diagnoses was done by designated experts working for the school district. We also consulted an academic educational psychologist to help us assess the help he was getting in school at the time. As a result, we moved to a neighboring county because we felt that the programs in their schools would better meet our son's needs.

Sunnysideup5883 Thu 05-Feb-15 23:17:07

From experience, knowing he is dyslexic will enable him to understand he is intelligent but struggles getting things down. I didn't know I was dyslexic and just assumed I was thick. Didn't help my esteem at all

Sunnysideup5883 Thu 05-Feb-15 23:19:10

Knowing will help him understand himself

PriscillaQueenofDesserts Fri 06-Feb-15 09:54:45

Does anyone know if there's any specific workshops or support available to children for self esteem issues relating to SEN? Either through school or privately? I totally agree that knowing that dyslexia or dyslexic tendancies are behind difficulties is really important, and it has been really helpful for my DS, but he still struggles at times.

Sorry for hijack OP but just had horrible morning with DS who seems highly sensitive at the moment. He's just spent the morning with destructive behaviour and yelling that he's not good enough - said he doen't want to be alive any more because he will always mess up. sad sad sad

All triggered by a new reward system we're trying out, and he had points taken away for continuing to wind his brother up this morning.

Littleturkish Fri 06-Feb-15 09:59:46

Our SENCO is qualified to diagnose, but that is unusual, I believe. She had to do lots of training and obtain qualifications to be able to do this.

I would ask if she is qualified to give a formal diagnosis?

orangepudding Fri 06-Feb-15 10:28:40

Priscilla, try asking your local children's centre of they know of any courses being run or of support groups.
One thing I would recommend is not taking away rewards earned, some kids will stop bothering to earn rewards if they know they will be taken away.

PriscillaQueenofDesserts Fri 06-Feb-15 10:35:51

Thanks Orange. I will try them, and a different tack with the reward system as he is finding it really difficult. It's such a shame as he had been doing so well.

iwantavuvezela Fri 06-Feb-15 10:39:50

You might wish to join or contact the British Dyslexia Association (BDA). They have workshops for parents; loads of resources and information to help and guide you around this.

dolfrog Sat 07-Feb-15 01:29:28

Hi All,
Dyslexia is not a condition, but a shared symptom.
Dyslexia is a man made problem regarding the decoding, and recoding the visual notation of speech, or the graphic symbols society chooses to represent the sounds of speech.
There are three cogntive subtypes of developmental dyslexia audiutory, visual, and attentional. Which means that an auditory processing disorder, a visual processing disorder , an attention disorder, or any combination of these issues can cause the dyslexic symptom.
Have a look at the program of the 2013 International Dyslexia symposium
So the real issue for all dyslexics is to identify the underlying cogntive cause or causes of their dyslexic symptom.
You may find more research based information in the CiteULike "Developmental Dyslexia" research paper sharing library,,

And there is also a "Developmental Verbal Dypraxia" research paper sharing library as well,,

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