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Young People

Thousands of children and young people have nystagmus. And of course every adult with nystagmus knows that it can sometimes be hard growing up with wobbly eyes. So you're not alone. We know nystagmus can be a problem sometimes, but there's no need for it to ruin your life. We can help you.

Here are a few things young people have written about nystagmus in our Focus newsletter or emailed to us:

From a 15 year old: "I have had nystagmus since I was born and to be honest it is the worst thing in my life. I try not to tell anyone about it and try not to admit that I have it. When I talk to someone one to one, I always look down and not look at the person I am talking to because I have a feeling that, that person will laugh at me because of the movement of my eyes. But when it comes to a point when someone spots my eyes moving all the time, they usually say "do it again". At first I don't know what the person wants me to do so I ask him "do what?" and he/she says "the eye movement". I am afraid of people laughing at me so I pretend that I did it on purpose."

"Hi, I'm Luke and I have nystagmus. I don't really like P.E. at school because it's mostly ball games. I can't see the ball very well and no-one passes it to me because I will drop it, so I'm not that good at team games. That's why I like skateboarding."

Sana writes how she came to realise that she needed to sit at the front of the class: "I can still recall a humiliating childhood memory of being asked to read something on the blackboard. Because I was too far away I couldn't see anything. I muttered that I couldn't see which caused the whole class (including the teacher) to laugh! It was horrible! However, it has not affected my education. I did well at GCSE level and received an A and 2 Bs at A level."

And student and amateur dramatics participant Victoria says: "To me, life is a show. The world is a stage... and my Nystagmus? A minor technical hitch in the system. I'm not going to pretend growing up with Nystagmus has been easy, because it hasn't. But it's not as bad as you may think."