Caitlyn Jenner has been known in recent years for her transformation from a man named Bruce Jenner, an Olympic gold medal-winning athlete and stepfather to the Kardashian family, to a woman named Caitlyn Jenner, an activist for the LGBT community and television personality.
While Caitlyn Jenner may have been renowned for various achievements and aspects of her personal life such as her Olympic gold medal, being a parent to the famous Kendall Jenner and Kylie Jenner, and transgender transformation, she is not as renowned for her most personal area of activism, which is raising awareness and promoting tolerance for a learning disorder she has struggled with in her lifetime.
ABOUT CAITLYN JENNER
Caitlyn Jenner was born on October, 28th, 1949 in Mount Kisco, New York. Her birth name is William Bruce Jenner. She attended high school at Sleepy Hollow High School and Newtown High school. She earned a football scholarship to Graceland College, where she graduated from in 1973 with a Physical Education Degree.
In 1974, Bruce Jenner, she was the American champion in the men’s decathlon event, while living as a man named Bruce Jenner. After her success in the Olympics, she continued her walk on the path of fame by working as a Wheaties spokesperson. Following that endeavor, she worked in the television and film, motorsports, and business industries.
Caitlyn Jenner has been married three times to three different women, Chrystie Crownover, Linda Thompson, and Kris Jenner. She has a total of six children, Burton “Burt” Jenner, Cassandra “Casey” Jenner Marino, Brandon Jenner, Brody Jenner, Kendall Jenner, and Kylie Jenner. She was also the stepparent of the four Kardashian children: Kim, Kourtney, Khloe, and Robert.
About the Learning Disorder
According to the Learning Disabilities Association of America (LDA), dyslexia is a learning disorder that “affects reading and related language-based processing skills.” Therefore, it affects a person’s ability to read, comprehend, decode, recall, write, and spell. The severity of this learning disorder varies by individual. The symptoms include:
- Reading slowly
- Struggling to read
- Struggling to comprehend what he/she is reading
- Difficulty with spelling
- Difficulty with mathematical calculations
- Struggles with working with written language
- Struggles with penmanship
- Struggles to recall known words
- Struggles with decoding
- Replaces a short sight word with another such as a, I, he, the, there, was, etc.
However, this learning disorder does not correlate with a student’s or person’s measure of intelligence. In fact, dyslexics tend to possess above-average intelligence.
Caitlyn Jenner’s Struggle and Activism
As a child, dyslexia greatly affected Jenner by making her petrified of reading in front of her classes at school. After delivering a poignant acceptance speech at the Arthur Ashe Courage Awards in 2015, she wrote on her blog, “As a dyslexic kid, my biggest fear in life was to go in front of the class and read because I just wasn’t very good at it — and that stays with you through your whole life.
That’s why all of my speaking engagements through the years have been always off the cuff. I’m better off getting up there knowing what I’m going to say and doing it. But at the ESPYs, I really had to stick to the prompter because I only had a certain number of minutes to make it right, to get my points across. I practiced, and practiced, and practiced, and practiced to make sure I’d nail it.” Sticking to the script during this eloquent speech, while bits and pieces were impromptu, assisted Jenner during this poignant speech. However, the Arthur Ashe Courage Awards were not the first time she spoke out about her struggle.
Caitlyn Jenner has been an activist to raise awareness about her learning disorder and promote tolerance for others who also struggle with the same learning disorder. She is involved with the National Dyslexia Research Foundation and has volunteered for the Special Olympics. She has written several books about her struggle such as Finding the Champion Within: A Step-by-Step Plan for Reaching Your Full Potential. She has also participated in a documentary about her learning disorder.
Caitlyn Jenner has created her destiny through her adversity. She did not allow her adversity to prevent her from achieving her legendary attainments; instead, she overcame them and utilized them to achieve her legendary attainments. She even stated, “If I wasn’t dyslexic, I probably wouldn’t have won the Games. If I had been a better reader, then that would have come easily, sports would have come easily, and I never would have realized that the way you get ahead in life is hard work.” She is a powerful role model for anyone who has dealt with an adversity in his/her life.
If a learning disorder had no power over Caitlyn Jenner, it cannot have power over anyone else. Being among the community of dyslexics is the furthest thing from a disabled; it is merely possessing a different, but even better capability.
Learn about Other Famous People With Dyslexia