Constance Hall has opened up about what it’s like living with dyslexia growing up.
The mummy blogger, from Perth, revealed how her parents and teachers tried everything imaginable to improve her concentration in school.
Her early experiences in the classroom were far from positive, with one memory coming to mind of the moment she was labelled ‘dumb’ by a teacher because she simply couldn’t read out her homework.
At the time, what Constance, her parents and teachers didn’t know was that there was a reason for her behaviour – she had dyslexia.
Blogger Constance Hall has opened up about what it’s like living with dyslexia growing up
‘My teacher made me stand up in front of the class and read her the answer to the two last questions of our social studies homework,’ she recalled.
‘I didn’t know them, she screamed “of course you don’t, this whole class knows how dumb you are”.’
Reflecting back on her struggles, the now mother-of-four said the signs started to show when she was in Year Two.
‘I hid my school reading from my mum for a whole year, partly because I was behind and partly because I was lazy,’ she said.
‘Nobody ever found out that I never did any homework.’
Growing up, the now-33-year-old said her parents even hired a tutor and cut out sugar from her diet – but to no avail.
‘In year 4 the teachers divided us into groups, 1 being the smartest and 5 being the dumbest. I was placed in group 5. My mum got me a tutor, it didn’t help,’ she said.
‘In yeah 5 while holidaying with my dad he cut out all of the sugar from my diet to see if it could improve my concentration. It didn’t.’
The mother-of-four revealed how her parents and teachers tried everything imaginable to improve her concentration in school – as they didn’t know the reason behind her behaviour
Opening up on Facebook, Ms Hall revealed the heartbreaking criticisms she overheard about her as a schoolgirl.
‘In year 7 my best friend overheard my music teacher telling my teacher that I was talented, my teacher responded that I will fail “just watch she always does”,’ she said.
At the age of 15, she attempted a TAFE course, only to develop anxiety after she struggled to concentrate.
‘It wasn’t until my 20s that I couldn’t read a number straight from a piece of paper without f***ing it up that I was informed that I had dyslexia,’ she said.
‘I wrote, I traveled and wrote, fell in and out of love and wrote, had babies and wrote. My writing was rejected by every publishing company in the country, still I wrote.
‘Until I was 28 and decided to find out if I could go to uni. I wanted to be a psychologist, I wanted to help people and above all I wanted to write.’
‘I sat my stat test to gain mature age entry, convinced I would fail I developed hives all over my body during the test and tried to give up. But I didn’t
‘A few months later I received a letter in the mail stating that I was in the top 92 per cent in the country.’
Opening up on Facebook, Ms Hall revealed the heartbreaking criticisms she overheard about her growing up (pictured with her fiance Denim Cooke)
But after being accepted in one of the best universities in Australia, Ms Hall said she ended up quitting because she struggled to learn.
‘Still I didn’t last, I had two kids and I found it incredibly hard. I couldn’t even learn the online library logins or how to reference an essay,’ she said.
Against all odds, Ms Hall has went on to lead a fulfilling career after becoming a best-selling author for her book ‘Like a Queen’
‘So I quit and continued to write.’
And against all odds, Ms Hall has went on to lead a fulfilling career after becoming a best-selling author for her book ‘Like a Queen’.
The popular writer has since launched her own clothing range, produce her on radio show and has even funded two safe houses in Kenya.
‘Because when you love be something it becomes a part of you, you don’t stop. Even if you can’t spell,’ she said.
‘This is why I celebrate my kids academic achievements but never worry about their failures.’
By sharing her story, she wants young people living with dyslexia to draw hope from her experiences.
‘Because I am who I am and if there are any other “dumb” kids who can’t spell or read or even learn how to use a f***ing PC I want them see me in them,’ she said.
‘Because there are so many different definitions of smart. Nobody believed I could do it. So I did it.’