February 6, 2009

Drawing things back to front....

Hawkis wrote:

I recently discovered (I am 38) that I draw everything back to front! I was doing the Brain Training on Nintendo DS and I had to draw Italy, and drew it back to front. I.E., the 'boot' was facing the wrong way.

This has come as a massive shock to me!

I also noticed that I drew other things back to front compared to other people. I may well be left handed, as my father believes my mother forced me to use my right hand to write when I was younger. My handwriting is awful, and I play football (soccer) left footed, and play Pool and Snooker left handed, so the evidence would point to me being left handed.

Anyway, I would like to know where I should be looking to enable me to discover if I was born left handed, and if so; how I can get back to what I should be doing naturally, and become left handed again.

I'd also like to know what the psychological implications have been for me, and what they are if I do become left handed.

PS - Thanks to Rosemary for her help in getting me to here!

15 comments:

  1. My father was forced to be a righty as soon as he started showing hand preference. So, whatever his parents had control over (writing, scissors) he did with his right. Whatever they had no control over (golf, fixing the car) he does with his left.

    As to how do you become left handed; use your left hand. Sounds to simple, right? But that's what Dad did and it took him no time at all. You're not re-learning everything (like letters and words) just how to make them. A few months tops and it'll start to feel natural.

    Oh, and once you're good at that? Try mirror writing, you seem to use it anyway in pictures anyway; just work at getting control over it. I mirror write whenever I'm jotting a quick note to myself as I find it easier - Dad doesn't use it though, but he's never done things mirror.

    So, just put the pen in the other hand, concentrate on it for a bit, then just let the words/drawing come naturally.

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  2. Hawkis, I haven't heard of someone with quite your situation before. It's possible that you were switched from left to right. There's certainly no harm in experimenting a bit to see if switching to the left would be helpful for you. Some people do switch back as adults and find it very liberating.

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  3. I knew for years that there was something "wrong" with me because all my life I have been unable to type with more than one finger, I can't fire a weapon with my right hand, I can't use a can opener, I cut my food with my left hand etc. I am 49 years young and I am an accident waiting to happen because I am so clumsy, and why wouldn't I be I am living in a right handed world. A few days ago I killed my computer because once again I knocked over my Coke right into my favorite toy. I just started researching the subject of lefty, and I now know that the New York Public school (which also put me in special Ed) forced me to write with my right hand. A few years ago I when to art school and the teacher kept on telling me that I hold my pencil the "wrong" way, and would make me hold it the "right" way which caused me not to be able to draw well. But I now realize that I was holding the pencil like a lefty would. So to all those "teachers" I want to say "gee thanks alot for screwing me up" and are they happy for trying to turn me into a CLONE! Oh well that's life!

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  4. In response to Rosemary, it is possible the reason you haven't heard of anything similar before is because others don't realise they are doing it?
    It took me 38 years!
    And that was only because of a coincidence.
    I am going to try it out over the weekend to see how I get on.
    I'm actually excited to try it, particularly drawing.

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  5. In response to Kit: It's not too late! I have heard from people whose lives were messed up by forced switching, who managed to retrain themselves and experienced great improvement and a sense of relief. It takes time to undo the bad habits that have forced on you, but it can be exciting and enjoyable. I suggest just picking up a pencil in your left hand and giving it a whirl. Don't expect too much at first, but keep going and you may be surprised by the results.

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  6. Hello,

    When i was young there was a time when i was at schoool and i started to write the date like this with my left hand.

    Date back forwards : 8891 enuJ 22, nobsiL

    Correct : Lisbon, 22 June 1988

    My teacher send a note to my parents saying that something was wrong with me but she didn't know what was it.

    Lets keep in touch,

    Nuno Faísca

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  7. I am 25, I tried to swicth back to my natural hand (which is left hand) twice in my life and each time ended up with raised spectacle power (i.e. weaker eyesite).

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  8. I am nearing the end of my first year being fully left handed. (I could just never fully get logged in to start a thread here. sorry RW:( )

    At any rate, I am pretty sure I just switched myself to being right handed to be like my big brother--and everybody else at school. My mom started telling me I was ambidextrous when I was in about 4th grade. Over the years I had started to suspect I was just a well practiced switched lefty. I also have always shot pool left handed (never tried snooker)--an interesting thing is, I didn't know I was shooting left handed for about ten years! That was kind if a funny realization--I'd thought my right handed girlfriend shot lefty, and my buddy Mike, and my buddy Steve...and then it dawned on me, I was shooting left handed. There was a ton of stuff like that over the years.

    Well, last year I just decided I had to know. Begining the switch was more "addictive" than pleasant--in fact it was fairly awful, entering the "put up or shut up" phase, plus always wondering if I might be just a tad daft. My writing became very legible in only a few days, but the smae high speed fluency as my right hand has taken awhile. Having said that, it has been enormously worthwhile--I can't write for hours now and my hand doesn't cramp, the penmanship is much more legible, and it just FEELS better, and I am just more content for having gone through the effort.

    Here is an odd (though slightly poignant)footnote--while going through old photos in preparation of putting together a retrospective slide show for my wedding I noticed that everything I did was with my left hand up until I becam school age--and then after that it was still about half the time.

    I wish you the best of fortune and I look forward to hearing about your experience. Oh yeah, totally give mirror writing a try, I was amazed at how easily I picked that up--it was very reassuring to have some concret evidence that I wasn't just imagining things. (mirror writing is much more common in lefties)

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  9. Last summer it hit me that I was left handed, even though at the time I thought I was nuts. All my life I was the ambidextrous one and I was fine with that. I Googled ambidextrous last summer and found that at max only 1% of the population might be. Through that I found the topic of converted handiness and as I read through the first site it hit me, the realization that I was left handed. Now I don't know if I was converted by force, socialization or what, but I found out that I broke my left arm twice, the first time when I was about 3 and again around 5 maybe 6. I asked both parents if they thought I might have been a leftie and they both got defensive and avoided the topic. Whatever the reason for the switch I decided that after 37 years I would switch back.

    I don’t know what advice to give concerning whether you should switch back, but for me it felt right and natural and of course I discovered that everything I do with my left is better than my right. My writing is legible, I can throw a ball more accurately and my golf game is much improved. Also it was weird how I was able to mirror write with out really thinking much about it. The funny thing is how naturally it came to use my left for writing and how after 4 month of just using my left hand for writing I tried to use my right hand and I actually had to remember how to use it to write. I never had to think about how to use my left hand I just needed to get the practice. The only real problem I get is that sometimes my left hand freezes when people say something about me being left handed, its like I feel like I have been caught doing something wrong. If you think it will fix emotional problems or some how make your life better it won’t. It is not a magic pill to fix life’s problems. But I would say for me at least, I would describe the improvement in my life simply as I am no longer operating against my self, I just feel more congruent.

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  10. same here i was made to write with my right hand and i am bad at it, but i do everything else with my left, I'm 17 now.
    I'm now trying to write with my left and i seem to write better, but it's not easy.

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  11. Hi, I guess I'll chime in too. I hardly ever respond. Well, I'm just like the rest of you. I'm 32. The main reason I switched to left hand was because I work in admin; write/ use the computer all day at work and at home. My right hand, wrist, and arm, hurt, feels strained, ache, you name it. Some people at my work are on disability, injured themselves from overuse (it is not natural to do repetitive motion), or on disability. I am feeling the aches and I haven't been there long. So I switched to my left hand; it was a relief on my right hand. Another reason something pushed me was because I am born (naturally) left handed. (Once in a blue moon I wonder how things would be like if I stuck to my natural hand.) Parents and teachers forced me to switch at age 5 or 6. I clearly remember getting beaten on the hand and head for using my left hand.
    Now, fast forward 25 years later, I am learning everything with the left hand. It can be awkward slow since you've been using your right hand all your life, but with consistent practice, things should work out. Writing was hard awkward at first, then it came in, in about 3 months, 6 months I can print comfortably, and fast with the left hand. Cursive is a challenge. I figure, 1-5 years, I should have it down packed. I found the challenging thing about writing lefty difficult is that your words/letters while you're writing get more covered as a left hander than as a right hander. The direction/tension/fluidity between pen and paper changes, etc..
    I'll practice everything else with my left hand like sports etc. Anyway if anything it makes things more interesting for your brain, like learning something new. I read all these awful articles on converting left handers; those articles sound awful, and make everything sound awful; I wonder if it's really true, or if they're just sensationalizing everything. But sad thing is I have a lot of those so called "consequences." And sometimes I wonder if all this is in my head. And yeah, it does feel wierd when someone points out you're left handed lol. I just don't reply. No need to go into an explanation for them. I don't see a big deal with being left handed or writing left handed; big deal. I have four ex boyfriends; two of them are left handed, two are right handed. I sat with the previous boyfriend we were both right handed. Now I sit with my boyfriend we are both left handed. lol. We hold our chopsticks left handed. His penmanship is ugly though. Hehe. Well, I just go back to my natural handedness. Later I will start to paint and draw left handed too. Sometimes I can't get over I can write with both hands funny. Even though I think there's a lot of other things in life that are harder to do. Before, I used to always read magazine backwards, drive with left hand only, naturally bat left handed. My mom got beat to be right handed; she tried to turn my cousin into righty also. Hehe. Lefties and getting beaten runs in our family! Converted righties unite and rebel authority and switch back hehe. That's my two cents people.

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  12. Oh Kit and Hawkis this is the first time Ive heard others with my problems I wish we could start a club. I am now 39 and just a few years back discovered that "maybe" I wasnt a righty after all. Since I wrote with my right everyone automatically labelled me a righty. Well, I caught a vague flashback of a teacher telling me not so nicely that left handed scissors didnt exist, so maybe that was the same one who "converted" my hand? I used to play baseball with my dad and brothers, one was a leftie one a rightie, my dad a leftie. When it was my turn to be in the field dad said Eric through jack your glove. Well when I covered my left hand I lapsed into a state of confustion, how was I do throw now? No one noticed I couldnt throw with my right arm. I have so many stories to tell, and I had to revert back to old photos to prove to myself I wasnt a rightie, since Ive been so brainwashed. Can we discuss these mishaps somehow together?

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  13. Yes I too feeling so deprived and robbed suddenly have reverted to teach myself to write with my left. I found something strange that occurs whenever I do so. There is a strong flow of energy that comes up and down from my head to my hand that is writing, when using the left that energy is free and my body feels at peace and ease even though mechanically my left doesnt know what to do. When using the right the opposite occurs, since Ive been taught to write with this hand, and the flow of energy is stranger, there is none, its as if its cut right off and I dont feel it. Now after sparatic pratice already I have a nice writing coming from my left hand...the way it SHOULD have been from the beginning, and I feel I am giving back to myself something that was taken from me, and wow what a big gift.

    PS Poor cupcake...they beat you?

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  14. heyyyyy how are u keeping??I knew for years that there was something â??wrongâ? with me because all my life I have been unable to type with more than one finger, I canâ??t fire a weapon with my right hand, I canâ??t use a can opener, I cut my food with my left hand etc. I am 49 years young and I am an accident waiting to happen because I am so clumsy, and why wouldnâ??t I be I am living in a right handed world. A few days ago I killed my computer because once again I knocked over my Coke right into my favorite toy. I just started researching the subject of lefty, and I now know that the New York Public school (which also put me in special Ed) forced me to write with my right hand. A few years ago I when to art school and the teacher kept on telling me that I hold my pencil the â??wrongâ? way, and would make me hold it the â??rightâ? way which caused me not to be able to draw well. But I now realize that I was holding the pencil like a lefty would. So to all those â??teachersâ? I want to say â??gee thanks alot for screwing me upâ? and are they happy for trying to turn me into a CLONE! Oh well thatâ??s life!

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  15. LOL! To the person who wrote the date backwards! Hhahah! Yeah most left handers can read backwards and upside down pretty easy, I can mirror read, read backwards as good as forwards. LOL! It's funny what your teacher wrote. Hhahah!

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