Perceptions & disability

Living with a disability means we’re either seen as heroic because we manage our disability, or that any effort we make is great because we’re learning to deal with it.

We’re not really seen as normal, but given the fact that having a disability still means we get to live in the same world as everyone else, albeit with a different set of issues to deal with, we should still be treated in the same way as those without a disability.

Living with a disability means we can’t always see things as clearly as those without a disability. It also means our physical and emotional presence are slightly altered, but our perceptions will still be the same as our counterparts. Disability doesn’t always change how we fundamentally go about living our life, apart from the obvious disability constraints.

We have the same ideals and beliefs than able-bodied people and therefore should be treat with the same normalcy. Perceptions from other people towards those of us with a disability can grow tiresome, because we want to be treat in the same way as others and because we’re just trying to live our lives.

Although treating us differently is often non-intentional, it can still make us feel insecure and it seem false. It can also make us feel like there is a lack of real expectation from others towards us and that any participation is just considered to be enough. Disability is a part of us, in the same way that what others deal with are a part of them.

It is other people’s perceptions of us that often keep us stuck, but since we share the same world with people without disabilities, we’re entitled to be treated in the same way and need to be.


14 May, 2016

6 thoughts on “Perceptions & disability

  1. The world revolves around prejudices and perceptions. The sceptic would say it is self perpetuating.

    Sometimes it is intentional and other times accidental. Either way it’s not pleasant to be on the receiving end when it’s simply a matter of being treated the same and indeed treating people the way wish to be treated.

    1. Thank you. Having been on the receiving end of people’s perceptions, there is and can be no excuse, no matter what we have to deal with.

      Whether those perceptions come in the form of bullying, or just simply by being ignored, neither are right or fair. They’re both a form of abuse.

  2. It is sad that a person must constantly worry about being singled out and judged unfairly simply because they’re different. When you’re viewed through the lens of a stereotype long enough, you lose part of your humanity and soft bigotry makes you question how you even see your own self.

    But everyone has a disability if you dig deep enough; people just know how to hide under privilege to keep their disabilities from being exploited.

    1. Thanks Tim. Yes, disability isn’t just about physical impairments. I believe disability is emotional too. No one is perfect. We all have something. I couldn’t agree more.

  3. Absolutely! I’ve found hardship in the workforce because of my disability. And the casual eye roll when needing help with something beyond my physical needs.

    Another one that’s hard to shrug off, is I move slowly like an old lady. I don’t even realize that I move slow at all, until some arrogant person tells me ‘you need to go faster.’

    It’s hard because I can’t help that. If I try to go as fast as everyone else expects, then I drain what energy I have within minutes. Then I get mad.

    1. Thanks Bonnie. Ditto on your thoughts. Your disability ‘isn’t about you.’ Your disability is other people’s perceptions of you and their inability to cope with what you are presenting to them.

      You are beautiful and I mean that sincerely. Anyone who does that to someone and think it’s okay, are the ones with the problem, as far as I am concerned. Don’t let them win or get to you.

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