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Dyslexic British MP Called 'Stupid' for Bad Spellings, Reveals What it's Like to Live with Challenges

Labour MP Peter Kyle, who is often lampooned on Twitter for spelling errors, called Twitter an 'unforgiving' place for people living with 'unseen challenges'

News18.com

Updated:October 29, 2019, 6:47 PM IST
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Dyslexic British MP Called 'Stupid' for Bad Spellings, Reveals What it's Like to Live with Challenges
Image credit: News18

A politician from United Kingdom has taken to Twitter to talk about his "acute dyslexia" while also asking netizens to take it easy on the strolling of his bad spellings in social media posts.

Labour MP Peter Kyle, who is often lampooned on Twitter for spelling errors, called Twitter an "unforgiving" place for people living with "unseen challenges", adding that often it can "sneering or brutal". He went on to further explain what it is like to live with acute dyslexia.

"The last time I was assessed, when I was 30, my reading and comprehension age was estimated at 8 years and 3 months," Kyle wrote. "For some things, like word comprehension, I was in the bottom 1 percentile. For others, like word association, the top 1 percentile," he added.

"I don’t know why but some words are worse...I was given a hard time recently for spelling ‘lose’ ‘loose’. It’s one of my common ones,"

"When I write it now......I still don’t recognise the right spelling by its meaning, I get it right because I’ve learned the shape. If I write ‘loose’ I now know it looks wrong, and the most likely letter to delete is an ‘o’ and when I do the shape looks right. Sadly I can’t do that for every word!"

The thread went on to detail how he was recently picked on for misspelling "border" as "boarder". "Most people were forgiving, hundreds were not: ‘thick’ / ‘can’t be an MP if you can’t even spell’ / ‘stupid’ / ‘resign and let someone with a brain take over’ etc."

Kyle went on to narrate the harsh treatment he had faced as a child, stating that the constant online bullying reminded him of a time was he wasn't as "resilient". "At school a teacher forced me to stand and read Shakespeare. I did it one painful word at a time," he wrote, adding, "The teacher and some kids thought it very amusing. Most looked at the floor in embarrassment or pity".

However, the Hove and Portslade MP who was elected in 2015 said he had not given up and despite hurdles, he had reached where he is today. Though Kyle left school without finishing, he returned at the age of 25 to complete his degree. He went on to get a PhD from Sussex University. It took him six attempts to before getting accepted.

Recently, a report by British Dyslexia Association found that schools in UK were failing to diagnose up to 80 percent of children living with dyslexia. As per a report in the BBC, approximately 870,000 out of England's 8.7 million school children has dyslexia. And a per data given by the Department for Education just about 150,000 were diagnosed.

"Above all I know I must work harder than most to achieve the same: prepping, writing, corresponding, reading...everything! This isn’t depressing, it’s liberating," he wrote.

He detailed how he used cream paper when reading a speech to reduce stumbles, a known technique employed by dyslexic people.

He also reprimanded people for suggesting that he get a member of staff to check his tweets before sending them, saying he would rather have them spend time "something valuable like helping the people who turn to us in times of need" instead.

His tweets have been widely read and shared on Twitter with many cheering for the MP for revealing his inspirational story. the thread brought forth many encouraging words. People shared their own experiences with dyslexia or raising children with dyslexia.

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