For many years, left-handed children were forced by their parents or schools to change hands and at least write right-handed. We have also heard many stories about other activities that have been forcibly changed – from eating to making the sign of the cross in Catholic schools.
We received a note from Kent in the USA that made us think about this again and try to get some more feedback from members on this subject. This is what he had to say:
I was forced to change my writing hand from left to right at a young age and I would like to see feedback from your other readers that were forced to write right handed as to how it affected them. I'm a male in the US and I wet the bed up until the age of 12 and I wonder if that was related. Also the universal opinion of my penmanship is that it is atrocious. I'm 62 now and a few years back I taught myself to write left handed. Although I'm slower left handed (probably less practice) the writing is clearly more legible.
Another thing that has made us think about this is a new film to be release shortly called “The King's Speech” about UK Monarch George VI (King from 1936 to 1952 and father of our current Queen Elizabeth II), starring Colin Firth and Helena Bonham Carter. He was a natural left-hander but was forced to write with his right and grew up as a nervous child with a pronounced stammer. The film does not seem to make much of the forced change in handedness, but stuttering is one effect of changing hands that has come up in research before.
There is a good article about the film here:
- Are you a natural left-hander who was forced to write right handed?
- Is there anything else that you have been forced to change and do right-handed?
- What effect did these changes have on you and how have things changed as you have grown up?
Are you aware of any research into this subject, or do you want to undertake any?
Please add a comment to this blog post or use our contact form to send us your thoughts – we will report back in a future newsletter.