Living With Dyscalculia

I want to give you my story of how I found out I had Dyscalculia before I cover how it affects my day to day.

Finding out

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I did not know anything about this until 200 while completing courses for my NVQ. My Lecturer at the time said he had concerns and asked me if I had heard of Dyscalculia and I said no and he explained it to me.

Remploy

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Following my NVQ and me finding out about my Dyscalculia I completed a quick 2-week temporary employment placement with a local agency and then signed on at the Jobcentre.

Following this I was sent on a voluntary placement initially for 1 weeks but I decided to extend and stayed for 5 years leaving in 2009 and left with a few years of admin experience.

Then in 2010 I was sent to training provider Remploy who I stayed with until 2011 my time here was pretty basic and despite some fallout it was not a bad experience and got some experience in retail.

A4E

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In 2011 I was on the move again this time to provide A4E on a 2 year course not my choice it was mandatory I was glad to leave it at 201.

Immediately A4E did not care about my maths difficulties and blamed me saying things like Its not the teachers fault its yours and causing me a massive amount of distress.

I was trapped with no where to go the Jobcentre did not want to help instead telling me to speak to them which was a waste of time as they just made up excuses.

Nuclear Option

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By the midway point at A4E I was wanting out as fast as I could and then the beginning of the end happened The Nuclear Option brought on by A4E itself.

I was asked to take part in a group interview for E-ON and I knew it would not be good and I was not wrong when the numeracy test happened I looked at it and left the room fighting against the tears and in the corridor I could not hold it anymore

Dyscalculia, Living With Dyscalculia, Tim Salt Writes

The Plunger had been pressed and I was a wreck I was shaking and a mess immediately an A4E helper came out and asked if I was ok and realized I was not making my problems up. 

Months after this I was given excuse after excuse to find me some help and finally in early 201 I got my escape when I started a new job.

Learning again

Dyscalculia, Living With Dyscalculia, Tim Salt Writes

In 2014 I enrolled on a maths course and improve my math level and I passed in 2015 and finally felt like someone had understood what I was going through since this I have continued to improve my maths and also undertook and completed 2 business courses in 2018.

How does my learning difficulty affect my day to day?

Dyscalculia, Living With Dyscalculia, Tim Salt Writes

Mental Health wise the worst aspect is emotional I can get upset very easily and super frustrated which I showed earlier in this piece in the A4E part and I want to do it and do it well.

But because I am not able to my anxiety goes up because I start worrying about how I will get a job while dealing with this.

What Can I Not Do?

This changes for everyone but for me I am not able to things such as times tables and cannot do calculations out in my head and when someone else answers a more complicated question in a flash I am probably still trying to figure it out 10– 15 minutes later and usually frustrated. I also often get distances wrong I am not able to read a tape measure properly.

No clever calculators for me

Dyscalculia, Living With Dyscalculia, Tim Salt Writes

I also get pretty upset as I am a gadget person seeing all the cool calculators and then realising I will never understand math enough to ever use one.

For me that does not hurt as much as when people invite me to take part in games like cards and I have to say I dont understand it enough to and then I feel terrible and pretty low.

the worst of all of the feelings for me is seeing my family and friends working and theres me not working and just sitting around.

Some of the words in this song from Gilmore Girls: A Year In The Life also sum up some of my feelings and its impossible to not feel a little emotional from this.

how is it now in 2019?

Well simple answer its not changed I work tirelessly to remain motivated despite finding day to day tasks like keeping up with jobsearch harder than ever and fighting anxiety caused by jobsearch under control as I easily get stressed out by seeing constant adverts with things like Maths C Grade and knowing I dont have that.

I always remain grateful to be able to do things such as read a speedometer in a car understand computer technology which often uses numbers and basic coding and enough to lead a mostly normal life.

If you would like to learn more about this learning difficulty you can check out : https://www.bdadyslexia.org.uk/dyslexic/maths-difficulties-dyscalculia

as of 2019 this difficulty still has little to no coverage compared to the likes of dyslexia so I will always continue to fight to get it better understood.

until next time

Dyscalculia, Living With Dyscalculia, Tim Salt Writes

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