Malaysiakini News

A dyslexic young man shares his view

Humans of Kuala Lumpur  |  Published:  |  Modified:

Dyslexia affects approximately 10 percent of school-age children in Malaysia, reports Persatuan Dyslexia Malaysia.

Rather than a disease or an intellectual defect, for which it is often misunderstood, dyslexia is a language-based disability.

Individuals with dyslexia process written words and speech differently, affecting their ability to read, write, spell and pronounce words.

Nevertheless, researchers and teachers have observed that many dyslexic children exhibit above-average abilities in other areas, such as music, art, mathematics, sports as well as speech and drama.

There is no cure for dyslexia but a dyslexic child can learn coping strategies through guided education programmes.

Last April, the government announced that a policy to address learning disabilities, such as dyslexia, is in the works.

A young man with dyslexia spoke to Humans of Kuala Lumpur about his love for reading, despite the challenges:

"I have a talent with numbers, back when I was working with a bank. All my colleagues tell me that, but I felt limited because I was not reading enough, and didn’t like the working culture there.

"I am motivated to read books, especially psychological and self-help topics, even though I have dyslexia and I have to read very slowly.

"I feel dizzy if I read too fast but I think it's better that I try and read a book, compared to others who can read but do not want to read books.

"People should read more books. People think they will become mature as they get older, but that’s not true - they will only become old.

"We think that we’re going to be mature, but humans will only be mature if we are diligent in studying, and reading books is one of the ways to be mature. Just because you’re old doesn’t mean you’re mature.

"I once read a book that says all of us people live to eat, drink and have fun - if you are not reading a book, that’s fine and you can live.

"But in truth you cannot live if you are not reading a book, because you’re spiritually dead.

"What makes us different from animals, for example, is that we can learn, think - and read."

This story was first published on the HUMANS OF KUALA LUMPUR Facebook page. In this photography project, Mushamir Mustafa takes pictures of random people in Kuala Lumpur, who tell him a story from their lives. It features on Malaysiakini every weekend.

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