Sure I find Chinese difficult, I’ve been studying for a while now and I have a long way to go. I am sure if I had learned Spanish I would be pretty fluent by now.
BUT, I taught English to immigrants, and some of them were immigrants who did not use a romanised alphabet. It took these students the better part of a year to get out of the beginners class (two hours a day - 5 days a week) As adults it would take them several months to master the alphabet, as for word recognition… (curiousl one of these students, after some time, was really quick at unjumbling words) My point is that they were struggling with a new writing system, and they progresse far slower than language groups that used a romanised alphabet.
On the other hand, my Japanese and Korean friends (who just happen to be from a background that is familiar with the character writing system) who study Chinese ARE reading books and news papers within a year (and sometimes months) of beginning to learn Chinese.
Yes, I think Chinese is difficult, but to call the written language (which according to McNaughton, in Reading and Writing Chinese, can cross seventeen languages. How “dumb” can a language like that be?
To a very large extent, the difficulty of Chinese depends on your background.