View Full Version : ADHD is not a gift, but is dyslexia a gift?


ConcertaParent
05-22-13, 11:00 PM
Between 24-70% of people with ADHD also have learning disabilities. Below is a recent video from the Conference on Dyslexia and Talent.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xyab_VSBCAk

Adduce
06-11-13, 06:19 PM
Interesting documentary regarding Dyslexia.

www.youtube.com/watch?v=GPhV9SyVmwA (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GPhV9SyVmwA)

And another regarding some memory/study tips for Dyslexics (and everyone else) from a 'Memory Grand Master'.

www.youtube.com/watch?v=OBkJz7EHmo0 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OBkJz7EHmo0)

dvdnvwls
06-12-13, 01:45 AM
Pfft.

I haven't watched the videos; I'm sure there's great info in there, and I may watch them.

Are there smart, good people with dyslexia? Sure there are. I've known several. A couple of them were/are truly brilliant.

But dyslexia is a pure defect, with not a hint of a gift to be found. End of story.

fracturedstory
06-12-13, 04:09 AM
Well, I wasn't going to say anything just as blunt. People with dyslexia can be great visually but it's more the brain compensating for its shortcoming.

If ADHD isn't a gift than dyslexia isn't. We can go through the list of mental disorders and arrive at some conclusion how they could be gifts. The word gift isn't a scientific explanation.

The fact is these are seriously impairing disorders. If I struggled to read more than I already do well you can kiss my creative writing goodbye. I read and read and read and read too. Dyslexia really wouldn't be an advantage to me. We only pick up little traits that can be seen as positive and tell ourselves these are advantages to make ourselves feel better.

Anyone could have the same traits but not be as impaired by them, thus not requiring a diagnosis, and getting far more ahead than those of us who have been diagnosed. I mean I'm reading Physics on the Fringe and all these outsider physicists just sound like they have anything from AS to bipolar to me. But they don't. They're basically people who have gone to great lengths to offer an alternative explanation to set facts of physics we take as the fundamental truths of nature.

I guess I didn't end up being less blunt. Sorry. If it makes you feel better and takes you out of the deepest darkest of depressions, go for it but don't try to sell it as an undeniable truth. What really confuses me is how people can say one disorder isn't a gift yet another one is. Both ADHD and dyslexia have a symptom overlap.

peripatetic
06-12-13, 05:05 AM
no, it's not.

i can somewhat understand why people want to find a silver lining in having dyslexia, another learning disorder...or any number of things...whatever enables someone to be able to face another day...far be it from me to force someone to face a harsher reality than s/he is equipped to cope with on any given day.

if you're asking because you're hopeful it might be some sort of "gift" or sorts because your child is suffering from it... i can, again, appreciate why one would look to turn a lemon into lemonade.

here's the thing though: your CHILD can be a gift...can be giftED...and be a person dealing with dyslexia. the two aren't mutually exclusive.

however...dyslexia is no more a gift than being born without opposable thumbs would be. could being bornwith a physical disability inspire some to take this or that path that ultimately worksoutwell? sure. could it be a point of...a source of accomplishment at having overcome ones impairment to succeed nevertheless (with support and accommodations and understanding)? sure. but that doesn't make it a gift anymore than being born visually impaired would be a gift. for something to be a gift...wouldn't you have to be able to employ it at will? surely a gift you're stuck with...not much of a gift. kinda like mandatory fun isn't any fun at all.

gifts also don't tend to result in accommodations that enable people to access the same learning opportunities as those without gifts...impairments do...gifts, they don't tend to result in having considerably increased difficulty in areas of basic functioning/learning...and just as you canfind someone who will say adhd is a gift...you can find people who say being paralysed...getting cancer...are gifts. that's what i'd consider rationalizing a ****ty situation to try and make it more palatable...because i don't konw a single person with dyslexia who sees it as a gift, really...and even if some say it's benefitted them somehow...how many would wish their children endured the same struggle?

if it's impairing enough for a diagnosis and so forth...no, it's not a gift...and if it's not that impairing...it's not properly speaking dyslexia.

Crazygirl79
06-12-13, 07:46 AM
I don't consider any learning disability to be a gift in anyway at all, I know NVLD is certainly not a gift and I don't think the Dyslexics I know would like me to rabbit on about how much of a gift Dyslexia is....they would probably yell at me or punch me out and rightly so too.

In saying all of that there are many Dyslexics who are quiet intelligent and very gifted in other areas but when it comes to the Dyslexia itself these people really struggle.

Sel x

atSWIMtooboreds
06-12-13, 08:25 AM
Pfft.

I haven't watched the videos; I'm sure there's great info in there, and I may watch them.

Are there smart, good people with dyslexia? Sure there are. I've known several. A couple of them were/are truly brilliant.

But dyslexia is a pure defect, with not a hint of a gift to be found. End of story.

This is probably not the right place to make this comment, and sorry for my verbosity - some days Adderall seems to just give me this ridiculous surfeit of words...

I've seen you take this same tack with ADHD. I think it's an important position to see people taking; in fact, I think it would be irresponsible to say some condition has benefits just in the hopes that people who have that condition don't feel bad for having it. At the same time, there sometimes seems to be just a slight implicit assumption about the separability of some or another disorder from the rest of a person's brain. When you say stuff like "That person would still be brilliant without dyslexia" or "That person would still be creative without ADHD", you're playing on that assumption. Developmentally, we can have no idea what that person would be like without those things. The brain is incredibly plastic and functions (construed both narrowly and broadly) that don't seem quite to go through in the "normal" way are often accomplished through some or another workaround. That kind of "alternate route", due largely (though not entirely, I don't think) to its rarity, is the kind of thing that people might construe as a "gift". It's all well and good to say - okay - now reach into the brain and plug in the normal route too, or - okay - now reach into the brain and take away the chemical imbalance, or something; but that doesn't seem to "take away" the disorder in the important sense.

It won't do to say "the diagnostic criteria define this as a disorder and say it impairs you" and stuff like that. If that were a good counterargument, it would be because the idea that x or y disorder is a gift would be contradictory by definition - oxymoronical, like the statement "Some brown cows are not brown", or something like that. But it's not contradictory; we can make cognitive sense of it - it has some content, even if it might be phrased in a non-optimal way. Since we know what people mean when they say some disorder might be a gift, that meaning must be what's at issue. I think the meaning is probably something roughly like: although the disorder is accompanied by all sorts of impairments of the sort mentioned in the diagnostic criteria, in some cases it is also accompanied by compensatory mechanisms not accounted for in those criteria, which can counteract, perhaps even fully, the impairments.

Ugh - sorry again about length, tone, appropriateness to topic if this is the wrong place...

sarahsweets
06-12-13, 12:05 PM
my son ia adhd, dyslexic, has dysgraphia and perception issues. An uphill battle for him and NOT a gift.

dvdnvwls
06-12-13, 01:23 PM
I've seen you take this same tack with ADHD.

In general, "taking a tack" (when used as a metaphor) means using an arguing trick, or putting a false spin on things that distracts people from the truth. I believe "taking a tack" is what the "it's a gift" people are doing, and I believe it's the opposite of what I'm doing. I don't think it's controversial or revolutionary or deceptive or spin-doctoring to say "having serious trouble learning and reading is a disadvantage". I do think it's deceptive spin-doctoring to say "having serious trouble learning and reading is good for you in other ways", and I think it's disrespectful to people with dyslexia (or ADHD or other disorders) to try to keep up this kind of pretence.

atSWIMtooboreds
06-12-13, 01:33 PM
In general, "taking a tack" (when used as a metaphor) means using an arguing trick, or putting a false spin on things that distracts people from the truth. I believe "taking a tack" is what the "it's a gift" people are doing, and I believe it's the opposite of what I'm doing. I don't think it's controversial or revolutionary or deceptive or spin-doctoring to say "having serious trouble learning and reading is a disadvantage". I do think it's deceptive spin-doctoring to say "having serious trouble learning and reading is good for you in other ways", and I think it's disrespectful to people with dyslexia (or ADHD or other disorders) to try to keep up this kind of pretence.

Sorry, didn't mean it this way. In the circles I'm used to hearing it in, it just means taking an argumentative stance or using a certain argumentative method. Probably the people who mean it the way you indicate don't trust the people I keep company with very much! :lol: