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Karen Lynn Vidra, The Texas Tornado

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Books by Karen Lynn Vidra, The Texas Tornado
Hidden Handicaps: Special Needs Parenting 101.
By Karen Lynn Vidra, The Texas Tornado
Saturday, March 01, 2008

Rated "G" by the Author.

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A father writes about his son's struggles in school and the teasing he must endure because of this.


My son, Oscar Wilde, is twelve years old, just entering that most vulnerable period in a kid's life. Being twelve years old is difficult enough without attaching the stigma of having disabilities that are beyond his control.

At the age of twelve, Oscar cannot read anything higher than first- or second- grade books. His spelling is atrocious, and no matter how hard we try to help him, his school work doesn't seem to improve. His grades are terrible; for him a C is good.

My son has dyslexia, which makes it hard for him to read; this also affects his ability to write well. In addition, he has trouble with math.


His disabilities are hidden: people can't see them; however, they're there, and they're most evident in his poor grades at school, in his inability to learn.

As a result of his problems, Oscar is often ostracized by the other kids in his class. Right now he's in regular classes; however, he's way behind the other kids. The kids call him "Stupid", "Retard", and other less-than-desirable names, names that hurt deep within his soul.

Oscar doesn't have any friends; he's often the one who's picked last for a game of baseball during recess, or the one who's tripped while carrying his lunch to the table in the cafeteria, only to have all the kids laugh at him.

Every day, our son comes home from school in tears.

It's frustrating because we've often told him to try his best. Well, he does try his best, and nothing seems to be getting any better for him.

It's getting to the point to where we are going to pull him out of regular classes, have him tested, to see if he qualifies for special needs education. This may be the very thing he needs because right now Oscar is on the brink of failing every subject.

We've tried to be patient, help our son through his struggles; he'd rather have us leave him alone, try to do his work himself (but often ends up calling for us anyway, as he's stuck).

Oscar is a very sad young boy. To see him hurting makes us,  his parents, sad, because he can't help the way he is.

He takes after one of my cousins, who also had dyslexia as a child (back then, they dismissed it as "being lazy, not applying himself"). Now my cousin is grown; however he can't work because he can't read, and nobody will hire him. He gets disability for his severe learning problems.

When he's not in school, that's when Oscar is happiest. Then he's outside, playing with the dog ("Freckles", our Dalmation), playing a round of basketball, or learning new tricks on his skateboard or inline skates. He's a typical little boy when not in a school environment; in school, he's a totally different child: lost, forlorn, totally without hope.

What's weird about this whole situation is he looks like a typical kid; however he does have a legitimate disability, and so he's going to get the help he needs if I see to it. Nobody is going to deny my son the right to a proper education; if anyone tries to stand in his way (or in mine), I'm contacting the ADA without fail.

I will let you know down the road if Oscar gets placed in special needs classes or if he gets the help, or if his grades improve. They can't get much worse than where they're at now! Take care, I'll see you down the road!

~Written by Wil Preston, Oscar's dad.

 
 


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Reviewed by Cryssa C 3/4/2008
I know these feelings well... You could have written this story about one of my sons. The saddest thing is that many teachers and school professionals don't believe in dyslexia and the devastation it can wreak in a person's life. It affects all areas...
When our son was tested for eye problems, we discovered that not only was it affecting his school work, but also his ability to see a ball coming towards him and things like that...

Cryssa
Reviewed by Georg Mateos 3/2/2008
Will, for your consolation, Olav, the late King of Norway had it and our own Jay Leno have it, dyslexia among other's notables and no so notables.
But it is not the cure that man should be aiming, but at that lack of understanding. Teasing the sufferer is a kind of fear reaction.
Teach your son to be strong!!!

Georg
Reviewed by Carole Mathys 3/1/2008
It is indeed sad and I hope they find the answers to help him...
love, Carole~
Reviewed by Karla Dorman, The StormSpinner 3/1/2008
This is very sad, indeed - kids can be so cruel - judge not, lest ye be judged - I, too, hope Oscar can find the help he needs. Sylvan?? Well done!

(((HUGS))) and love, Karla.

LOVE Oscar's name - gave me a chuckle. :)
Reviewed by Art Sun 3/1/2008
This is sad...I hope his parents find the source to help them and their son...
Reviewed by Mr. Ed 3/1/2008
Oscar is a very sad young boy. To see him hurting makes us, his parents, sad, because he can't help the way he is.

This story will sadden all who read it. And I hope Oscar can get some happiness in his life soon.

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