Turning 29 next week - I want more control over my Dyspraxia

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brianc92101
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Turning 29 next week - I want more control over my Dyspraxia

Post by brianc92101 »

28 year old male, turning 29 next week. From a young age I struggled with some of the motor stuff, went to High School and just ''didn't get'' the practical subjects such as woodwork and technical graphics and had to get an exemption, also extremely poor at Maths.... so at the age of 13 I had an educational assessment and got told I had dyspraxia, on the mild-moderate(ish) scale.

From the age of 13-24 it didn't really impact me too much as I had an exemption from practical subjects in high school and then I did Sociology in college. Also in college dorms everything like bills etc was organized through the college. However I knew the dyspraxia was there and that it would manifest again eventually. It was when I started to house-share at the age of 23/24 when the problems arose again.

Whether it was remembering bills or to put the bins out, trying to fix stuff in the house with my hands, failing to make connections (i.e. how leaving a key out for a cleaner would mean that the cleaner could also just take our key and rob our house at any time). One example was from last summer where my room-mate told me to have my phone beside me as he needed to ring me to check something important, I was listening to him and told I would, completely forgot about it and he rang me like 15 times and I missed each call. Naturally he was annoyed at me, but I think he understood I didn't do it on purpose.

Poor hand and motor co-ordination which means things take me a long time to do, terrible at remembering instructions and minor details, poor attention to detail, poor organization skills. These are the main manifestations of my dyspraxia.

Furthermore, there is the external perception from others that it is laziness, which is extremely frustrating and isn't true for a lot of instances. There are some instances where it is laziness - such as when it comes to cleaning my room - but for the most part it's a genuine struggle.

Any ways the good news is that I am already taking control of it through certain actions:

- Writing everything down. Either on notes or on my phone, so I don't forget anything. It's a way for things to register with me or to be in another location apart from my head so that I don't forget them.

- Going slowly as possible. For example when completing a task such as opening a tin of beans. Don't worry about taking ages to do it, and what other people will think. If people lose their patience with you for not doing it quickly just tell them upfront ''some of these things for me take a bit longer, okay, so it's gonna take me a few more minutes. If you need to get it done quickly then you can do it and I'll sort some other stuff out''. Furthermore, if you're not sure you're able to do something, don't be afraid to admit it. I wish I implemented this approach when I was younger.

- Practicing mindfulness. I struggle with Insomnia also, and I'm reading a sleep help book with many useful mindfulness techniques. I am going to start implementing these techniques on a daily basis in the next 5 weeks. I think it will benefit me not only with sleep, but also with my Dyspraxia. Indeed it firmly ties into my 2nd action of 'going slowly'.

I guess the reason I posted this though is that I want to see are there any other things which can help.

Are there any online occupational therapy courses, or online courses for people with Dyspraxia which some of you use and which you can recommend for me? Or any other tips or advice at all?

Thank you for reading!
Tom fod
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Re: Turning 29 next week - I want more control over my Dyspraxia

Post by Tom fod »

Hi Brian and welcome. Glad you've found us.

I see it more as something I can live with rather than control. A lot of life's chaos stems from the unpredictable/unforseeable behaviour/reactions of other people/things. I don't recall what exam result I got in Technical Drawing but I think being exampted is sometimes a bad thing as it reinforces our sense of failure. That said if a certain class causes us pain, finding a better alternative may be appropriate. Not sure which if any schools directly teach strategies for remembering to pay bills and manage money. Might have made Maths more useful/engaging to use real world examples of its application?

In theory any cleaner should be a trusted person and have a key. In theory a key left out could be picked up by anyone, not just a cleaner. It's easy to look at past mistakes and beat ourselves up for what we should or shouldn't have done. Sometimes our better long-term memory becomes a stick that we beat ourselves with.

We are anything but lazy and those who dismiss or label us as such might do well to attach both a 'Lazy' and a 'Stupid' Label to themselves while they're about it. I live in a pretty untidy flat and was 37 before I left home. I think because we see the bigger picture of all the chaos it can be easy to feel overwhelmed and discouraged and that can lead to inaction/paralysis. Your coping strategy of doing things at your own pace is sound as is asking for help or leaving certain things to others, where that is an appropriate/viable option. Absolutely well done on the mindfulness. I'm not sure I have the patience. CBT is definitely worth a look.

I'm not sure I've ever seen Occupational Therapy offered online and regrettably there is very little if any dyspraxia specific training out there. There are things such as Learning Breakthrough (Belgau), DORE and Brain Balance but they're more aimed at relieving guilty parents of hundreds - thousands of pounds. Proceed very carefully if you wish to research, but I would personally say avoid these charlatans at all costs.

Read the posts here and engage with other dyspraxics and learn what strategies work for them with a mind to adapting them to your own needs.
Tom
Moderator/Administrator

With a foot full of bullets I tried to run faster but I just hobbled on to the next disaster.
(from Peter and the Test Tube Babies, Foot Full of Bullets)
brianc92101
New member - welcome them!
Posts: 2
Joined: Sun Jan 10, 2021 9:06 pm

Re: Turning 29 next week - I want more control over my Dyspraxia

Post by brianc92101 »

Tom fod wrote: Sun Jan 10, 2021 11:07 pm Hi Brian and welcome. Glad you've found us.

I see it more as something I can live with rather than control. A lot of life's chaos stems from the unpredictable/unforseeable behaviour/reactions of other people/things. I don't recall what exam result I got in Technical Drawing but I think being exampted is sometimes a bad thing as it reinforces our sense of failure. That said if a certain class causes us pain, finding a better alternative may be appropriate. Not sure which if any schools directly teach strategies for remembering to pay bills and manage money. Might have made Maths more useful/engaging to use real world examples of its application?

In theory any cleaner should be a trusted person and have a key. In theory a key left out could be picked up by anyone, not just a cleaner. It's easy to look at past mistakes and beat ourselves up for what we should or shouldn't have done. Sometimes our better long-term memory becomes a stick that we beat ourselves with.

We are anything but lazy and those who dismiss or label us as such might do well to attach both a 'Lazy' and a 'Stupid' Label to themselves while they're about it. I live in a pretty untidy flat and was 37 before I left home. I think because we see the bigger picture of all the chaos it can be easy to feel overwhelmed and discouraged and that can lead to inaction/paralysis. Your coping strategy of doing things at your own pace is sound as is asking for help or leaving certain things to others, where that is an appropriate/viable option. Absolutely well done on the mindfulness. I'm not sure I have the patience. CBT is definitely worth a look.

I'm not sure I've ever seen Occupational Therapy offered online and regrettably there is very little if any dyspraxia specific training out there. There are things such as Learning Breakthrough (Belgau), DORE and Brain Balance but they're more aimed at relieving guilty parents of hundreds - thousands of pounds. Proceed very carefully if you wish to research, but I would personally say avoid these charlatans at all costs.

Read the posts here and engage with other dyspraxics and learn what strategies work for them with a mind to adapting them to your own needs.
Thank you Tom for the warm welcome, I probably should have introduced myself a bit better seeing as it was my first post.

You are 100% correct about the ''something I can live with rather than control'' mindset. That lesson also applies to Insomnia which I'm also trying to tackle at the moment - ''controlling it will often only amplify it, you need to welcome it, and live with it to the best of your ability.'' It's the same for Dyspraxia.

I guess I'm interested to see if mindfulness will help with it, I can only imagine that it will have some positive effect. It's literally ''being mindful'' which means you are going that extra distance to live and act in the moment. Surely that will have a positive knock on effect for my Dyspraxic struggles such as ''following instructions, completing manual tasks''. I'm interested in the correlation and hopefully it brings fruitful results.

Online Occupational Therapy is something I feel could be worth looking into, but as you say, it may not exist and one would need to be aware that they could be making a one way trip to scam city ;)

Any ways apart from this I guess my best tool is what you suggested, to engage on this forum and learn from fellow persons with Dyspraxia and how they manage on a daily basis!
Tom fod
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Joined: Thu May 12, 2011 9:05 pm
Location: SW UK

Re: Turning 29 next week - I want more control over my Dyspraxia

Post by Tom fod »

Brian

You're very welcome. There are no wrong answers or expectations about how or when folk introduce themselves and what/how much they share.

I've been chatting to some dyspraxic friends on Zoom and one of them mentioned a segment on the Michael Ball Sunday Brunch show on BBC Radio 2 about wellbeing and dealing with current events including a strategy for clearing the mind before sleep by announcing to oneself calmly/repeatedly that your mind is clear to dispel thoughts. Not sure if that is partly an NLP type technique?

I think we tend to have to think/concentrate harder so consequently it can be harder to switch off and get to sleep. I'm very much as night owl too and should probably put my phone out of reach once I go to bed. There is a lot of worrying things in the world to keep us awake right now. I definitely find the more tired/stressed I am, the more I'm likely to make silly mistakes and be trapped in a vicious circle of self-recrimination and/or uncertainty.

I think a healthy dose on cynicism and objective questioning of claims made and/or asking a trusted friend is worthwhile proof against trusting what might actually be too good to be true.

There's a multitude of Dyspraxia Groups on social media but the community can be and is currently quite fractious, - the Pandemic and lockdown has a lot of us on the edge! I suppose I'm somewhat biased, but this Forum by contrast is a quiet backwater.and veritable oasis of peace and tranquility, despite my involvement over the last 10 years 8-D!
Tom
Moderator/Administrator

With a foot full of bullets I tried to run faster but I just hobbled on to the next disaster.
(from Peter and the Test Tube Babies, Foot Full of Bullets)
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