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Dyslexic Traits in Adults

Reading Mastery

Career

  • Employed in job/position that will hide difficulties or not require dealing with problematic areas.
  • Hides difficulties from co-workers, friends and even family.
  • Becomes frustrated at “planning meeting” and sequential tasks – may have the answer and know how to do it well before others.
  • Becomes frustrated, impatient, or overwhelmed with long forms or sequential processes.
  • Thrives in careers where visual-spatial/kinesthetic talents can be realized:  For example Entrepreneurs, Engineers, Trades (carpentry, plumbing, electrical), Artisans, Interior Decorating, Actors, Musicians, Police/Investigation, Athletes, and Business Executives (usually with staff/assistants).
  • May pass up promotions or advancement opportunities that would require more administrative work.
  • Has difficulty focusing and staying on task – may feel more comfortable managing many different tasks simultaneously.
  • Difficulty with tests - passing standardized tests can be a barrier to career advancement.
  • Highly successful/overachiever, or considered “not working up to potential.”
  • Displays extreme work ethic.
  • May be a perfectionist and overreact when making a mistake.
  • Out-of-the-box thinker or operates with very strict rules for himself/herself.
  • Excellent problem-solving skills.

General

  • Highly intuitive - known to have “street smarts.” Is often “dead on” in judging personalities of others.
  • May be able to sense the emotions and energy of others.
  • Remembers struggling in school.
  • May have dyslexic children. Experiences guilt when seeing own child struggle. Insecurities arise while reading to own children or helping them with homework.
  • Easily distracted/annoyed by noises and other things in the environment.
  • May appear to “zone out” and be unaware that it is happening.
  • Enjoys video games.
  • Misspeaks, misuses, or mispronounces words without realizing it.
  • May have poor balance or is/was very athletic.
  • May have excellent recall of events that were experienced or not remember at all.
  • May confuse past conversations or be accused of “not listening.”
  • Difficulty remembering names of people, but remembers faces.
  • Difficulty remembering verbal instructions or directions.
  • Poor recall of conversations or sequence of events.

Math, Time Management and Directions

  • May understand higher math, but can't show it on paper.
  • May excel at math, or may still rely on tricks for remembering math facts.
  • Relies on calculators or finger counting.  May have difficulty with making change.
  • Difficulty with left/right and/or North, South, East, West.
  • Gets lost easily or never forgets a place they’ve been.
  • Difficulty reading maps.
  • May have anxiety or stress when driving in unfamiliar places. Relies on others to drive when possible.
  • May lose track of time and is frequently late - or is highly aware of it and is very rarely late.
  • Finds it difficult to estimate how long a task will take to complete.

Reading, Writing, and Spelling

  • Difficulty reading, especially with unfamiliar fonts.
  • Avoids reading out loud.  May dislike public speaking.
  • Will commonly perceive that they “read better silently.”
  • Has adopted compensatory tricks to remember spelling or has poor or inconsistent/phonetic spelling.
  • Reading fluency and comprehension fluctuates depending upon subject matter.
  • Frequently has to re-read sentences in order to comprehend.
  • Fatigues or becomes bored quickly while reading.
  • Reliance on others (assistants, spouses, significant others) for written correspondence.
  • Uncertainty with words, punctuation, and spelling when writing. Reliance on spell-check and grammar-check.
  • Written work will not reflect the level of knowledge or expertise that would be given verbally.
  • Words out of context look “wrong.”
  • Poor handwriting - masks spelling mistakes.
  • Writes with all capital letters, or mixes capital letters within words.  Abbreviates words frequently.

Behavior, Health, and Personality

  • May have a short fuse or is easily frustrated, angered, or annoyed.  Easily stressed and overwhelmed in certain situations.
  • Low self-esteem.
  • Self-conscious when speaking in a group.  May have difficulty getting thoughts out - pauses frequently, speaks in halting phrases, or leave sentences incomplete.  This may worsen with stress or distraction.
  • Sticks to what they know - fear of new tasks or any situation where they are out of comfort zone.
  • Extremely disorderly or compulsively orderly.

© 2008 by Karen LoGiudice, New England Dyslexia Solutions – used with permission.

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