I've been wanting to write this blog for a while, but wanted to to make sure it was done right and in a way where I could offer some advice/support after I noticed a lot of parents of children with dyspraxia/dyslexia were asking for advice about emotional sensitivity and anxious meltdowns. In this blog I want to raise awareness of emotional sensitivity issues, offer some advice and hopefully show how sensitivity can be a real strength of character
Throughout my life I've always been a very sensitive person and found life very overwhelming, not just because of my dypraxia/dyslexia but just who I am, think I've inherited it through the generations my mum has always been a very anxious worrier, but at the same time is one of the most generous kind people I've met in life. My sensitivity means that as a child I used to have quite a lot of anxious melt downs, I struggled to cope in the environment around me, and it was literally like walking on egg shells for my family and those close to me. Being so sensitive means I deeply care about a lot of issues and have a strong sense of justice, I can't bear to see any unnecessary pain or suffering and can't understand why somebody would hurt another person or an animal. As a person it means I can struggle to regulate my emotions, be a very literal thinker and take things to heart, my boyfriend says I wear my heart on my sleeve, and am a very conciousness person and would hate to upset anyone it also makes me prone to health and general anxiety.
Having dyspraxia frequently causes anxiety and lacking self esteem and confidence. Emotional problems are common because firstly a lack of awareness and understanding of what dyspraxia is in general, if we have an issue in public people a lot of people will not automatically think "oh it could be dyspraxia" I know for me that's always something which has made me self concious and pressures from people who may not understand. A lot of my emotional meltdowns as a child and growing up were also out of frustration, frustration at my body and brain not deciding to do what it was told to do. also I am a very sensitive to sensory issues such as noise and heat. We can also find it hard to adapt to new or unpredictable situations and have fear of the unknown. I'm a very visual thinker and like to plan situations or rehearse them out in my head, I plan every eventuality which could happen, sometimes ending up catastrophisng them. I can also rehearse conversations too, to make some social situations easier for me as I can find some social situations overwhelming/ not easy. My mum also does this so again a lot of people who aren't neurodiverse can experience similar anxiety's. I used to be so insecure about being so sensitive, I was surrounded by really assertive people, and my good nature and literal thinking was often manipulated by others and it lead to me experiencing bullying.
Things changed slightly when I accessed talking therapies, I could have done with this a lot earlier in life to help me manage my emotions in a more positive way and develop my confidence. I also got taught some skills for assertiveness and being able to say no. I think it's important to work out strategies which will work best for you/your child unique to you/them but I hope this blog make have helped highlight what some of the triggers. For me this is an on going process and I hope over time I will be able control my anxieties and not let them control me. I think it's helpful to have a more rational view of a situation too I find my boyfriend helps really well with this.
I've also realised that over time my emotional sensitivity has been turned into emotional resilience which shows that sensitivity isn't a sign of weakness but a sign of strength and that being sensitive can have some positives in life too such as being very empathetic to others and have a natural understanding when they might be struggling with life, I find I'm very good at working out when someone isn't ok and needs a bit of support, also it makes us have non judgemental and seeing the bigger picture both of people and situations , in world sometimes filled with so much bitterness and cruelty that can be such a good thing. It can also be a huge strength in a lot of jobs working with people and animals. In my job as a learning support I can understand what it's like to struggle and give my students a confidence boost and a bit of encouragement. I've also accepted it as part of me, and I hope given some of the recent situations which have happened in my life that it is a positive quality to have. If you're lucky in life to know a sensitive soul don't take advantage or manipulate them but instead embrace the positives which it can bring support them in seeking any help to make life easier and sensitivity is a rarity in society so grasp it with open arms, literally sometimes, now anyone need a hug?