Though "Dr. McDreamy" has had a successful on-screen career in the TV series Grey’s Anatomy, Patrick Dempsey’s childhood wasn’t nearly as easy.
Until he was 12 years old, Dempsey was placed in a class for slow and retarded children only to discover he had dyslexia.
"I think [dyslexia has] made me who I am today," he revealed to Barbara Walters. "It’s given me a perspective of — you have to keep working. I have never given up."
Dempsey has starred in many films and television shows outside of Grey’s Anatomy, including Sweet Home Alabama, Transformers: Dark of the Moon, and Valentine’s Day. Despite his success, Dempsey is still wary about reading his lines, especially if he’s handed the script just a few minutes before rehearsal.
"I think that’s when I get the most insecure ... it’s very hard for me to read it off the page," Dempsey said. "I need to memorize it, in order to go on."
The actor even hired a coach to help him with his lines early in his career, but a coach couldn’t help him once it was time to get in front of the camera.
Even with all of his success, Dempsey is still learning to overcome his dyslexia. When his daughter, Talula, was learning to read, Dempsey used those moments to help him with his learning disability, too.
"I’ve gone back and started to learn to read on a very basic level," he added. "I’m healing that part as well as developing my daughter."