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Princess Beatrice health: Queen’s granddaughter ‘struggled’ as a child with her disorder

PRINCESS BEATRICE, 32 – the elder daughter of Prince Andrew, Duke of York, and Sarah, Duchess of York – has been vocal about her dyslexia over the years, raising awareness about the learning disorder. The Queen’s fifth grandchild recently spoke out once again about how it impacted her life as a child.

Princess Beatrice has provided the narration for an animated version of the book Xtraordinary People, written by Kate Griggs, founder of the global charity, Made By Dyslexia.

Her Royal Highness is an ambassador of the charity.

“It’s no secret that I struggled with my dyslexia as a child and often even wished it away,” Beatrice recently said in an accompanying statement.

“But now I see it as a tremendous gift and I want every dyslexic child to know that they too can tap into their dyslexic strengths.”

The children’s book explores how richly nuanced living with dyslexia can be.

“Xtraordinary People identifies the seven children’s archetypes, which outline the exceptional skills that dyslexic children are hardwired to be ‘xtraordinarily’ good at, highlighting ‘dyslexic superpowers’ through seven types of ‘xtraordinary’ characters,” Made By Dyslexia said about the book.

Each of the seven characters are detailed alongside eye-popping illustrations.

The book includes a foreword by Sir Richard Branson, who is also dyslexic.

The Royal has previously spoken about how challenging living with dyslexia can be.

Speaking in a podcast for the Helen Arkell Dyslexia Centre, of which she is patron, Beatrice said: “I remember one of my earliest memories was sitting in front of a Beatrix Potter book and the illustrations were so beautiful but the words meant nothing.

“I was put into specialist classes and I remember the teacher looking at me and saying, ‘Why do you keep looking at me, the words are not written on my face’.”

Beatrice also revealed at the time that she still misspells words and struggles with reading.

Despite the challenges, the Queen’s granddaughter said being diagnosed with dyslexia was “the greatest thing that ever happened to me”.

Dyslexia – how to spot it

Dyslexia is a common learning difficulty that can cause problems with reading, writing and spelling.

“It’s a specific learning difficulty, which means it causes problems with certain abilities used for learning, such as reading and writing,” explains the NHS.

As the health body points out, unlike a learning disability, intelligence isn’t affected.

“Signs of dyslexia usually become apparent when a child starts school and begins to focus more on learning how to read and write.”

A person with dyslexia may:

  • Read and write very slowly
  • Confuse the order of letters in words
  • Put letters the wrong way round (such as writing “b” instead of “d”)
  • Have poor or inconsistent spelling
  • Understand information when told verbally, but have difficulty with information that’s written down
  • Find it hard to carry out a sequence of directions
  • Struggle with planning and organisation.

What causes dyslexia?

The exact reasons why a child may have dyslexia aren’t fully understood at present.

“It’s thought to be caused by differences in the way that their brain processes information, particularly language,” explains Bupa. Read more: daily express