DLD & Mental Health

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This story and the comments below raise issue that can be hard to read.  It is incredibly brave to write about personal experiences such as these and RADLD do now wish to hide the impact DLD can have on some individuals.  These personal experiences underline the need for greater awareness and knowledge about DLD, as well as support across the lifespan. If you feel your mental health could be affected by reading stories and mental health difficulties and suicide, we advise you not to read any further.



By Lizzy Campbell

Hi my name is Lizzy. I’m 31 I live in England. I was diagnosed in 2013 with a mild learning disability and Specific Language Impairment (now known as Developmental Language Disorder or DLD). I knew from a young age there was something not quite right. But couldn’t put my finger on it. I struggled significantly through school and adulthood. I have learnt to adapt things I struggle with. My mental health has taken a huge knock as I find if people don’t understand me so I get agitated and upset with myself. It got to the stage where my mental health was that bad I jumped off a railway bridge and broke my back in April 2017. I suffered a lot of life time off injuries.  Including 4 spinal operations and a permanent colostomy bag.  No proper help was put in place to prevent what sadly happened to me. Now I am doing a lot about making awareness about people with learning disabilities and Developmental Language Disorder with mental health. Life is hard enough already. But if you have a communication difficulty it’s even more challenging.  It can be so frustrating and so lonely. As you feel different. I am in a really good relationship with someone who understands me. Explains things in ways I understand, support me if I get agitated or upset as I get overwhelmed with daily life.


Editor’s note – if you or someone  you know is affected by mental health difficulties, please seek help from a professional or call a helpline for support.

3 Responses

  1. Aileen says:

    Lizzie, I am so sorry it took so long and so much heartache for your difficulties to be recognised as DLD, with the resulting awful impact on your life. Thank you for being brave enough to tell your story to stop this being anyone else’s journey. Much love.

  2. I have to agree with you, Lizzy, DLD & Mental Health aren’t good friends. I have got DLD, and unfortunately, I have good and bad days with MH. Some days I just feel like crying all day, and other days, I am happy as pie (if that’s the saying). So, I know what you’re saying although, I haven’t had it as bad as you. I am always trying to make people not realize that I’m having a difficult time, but as the poem by Shahkela Sandridge called ‘Tears of a Clown’ says, ‘I hide behind the mask of a clown that hides the tears’ and that’s what we do.

  3. DLD is a terrible condition.My problem is with Semantics and Pragmatics.Communication with others is hard,dealing with instrucrions as well.I am now 64 but rely on alcohol ro somehow get through lifes daily struggles.I think the cause of my DLD was my dear Mum having a difficult birth,she lost a lot of blood and the baby only needs a drop in oxygen levels to bring about many conditions including DLD.Saying that it can be genetic but everybody in my family are pretty clever.I hope Lizzie you can soldier on but it is damn hard Xxxx

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