Lefties left behind in a right-hand world

My parents never “corrected” my inclination to write with my right hand, much to my grandparents’ dismay. Sometimes, though, I wish they had fixed me. 

When I was just 6 years old, learning to perfect my penmanship, my grandfather warned me of the several traumas I’d face should I continue using the dreaded left hand. Maybe I should’ve switched to the right side.

Even though I eventually learned to work around this, there was a time in my life I couldn’t write down a single word without it leaving a remnant on the side of my hand. Half of my notes ended up smudged on the side of my hand, and my neat notes were always illegible. I should’ve learned to write the right way.

I never knew desks for left-handed students existed until I got to high school. I marveled at the thought of being able to sit straight and take notes in a class, without having to bend in an awkward shape to take notes like a normal human being. Unfortunately though, these desks are not portable.

Once, I was told lefties could receive scholarships to get into college – just for being a lefty. I inquired about the possibility of receiving such monetary recompense after all these years of subpar treatment, but was laughed at by many college admissions counselors. Nothing comes easy when you’re left-handed.

When it comes to sitting down to eat at a table, I always have to be wary of my neighbors. Bumping elbows with a righty is the worst – especially when you’re the only lefty at the table.

Luckily though, I’ve discovered several solutions to remedy my problems. I’m learning to write in Hebrew and Arabic. Or maybe I’ll give George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton or Barack Obama a phone call and ask them for some advice – since they, too, are left-handed. Bart Simpson may also give me great advice … he’s a lefty, too.


Stephanie Parra is a junior majoring in political science and journalism.