We all have goals and ambitions for our children.

When your child has learning difficulties it is sometimes hard to imagine that they will reach some of the goals that other children seem to find easy.

Try not to let that panic you; your child will find their way, but perhaps the destination will be slightly different for them, or they will get there later than their peers.

Set realistic goals and hold your nerve. A small sign of progress is still a sign of progress.

My ONLY goal for my youngest son when he was seven years old was for him to be able to read by the time he was eleven.

This was because he had been so badly affected by his experiences at school that I realised it would take a long time just to help him recover from all that.

Luckily he is a fesity character, determined to do his best and driven to succeed.

He was reading fluently at around 9.5 - 10 years old.

He can also now write legibly and his spelling is no more terrible (and often much better) than that of his non-Dyslexic peers, if communications via email and on social networking sites are anything to go by.

But most importantly he has begun to believe that he is an intelligent person.

It took longer to convince him that he isn't stupid than it did to facilitate his literacy successes.

Even now he has to be reminded that nobody knows everything straight away, and that his peers have to work at things too.

So he's reached my goal - what now?

Last week he told me that he wants to start taking courses to get some formal qualifications.

Whilst this upcoming mixed metaphor shows my ignorance of most things sporty, it is, I think, pertinent.

He has taken the torch of ambition from me, and set off in search of another goal of his own making.

Or a basketball hoop.

Or a dartboard.

Something he can aim for, anyway.

And that's the biggest success of all.

He now has the determination and belief that he can achieve things for himself; just like everyone else.

So don't worry if you have to play the long game regarding goals and successes for your child.

No-one ever asks an interview candidate at what age they learnt to read fluently - it's just important that they can.

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