Health Blogs | neurological disorders

Invisible Disabilities; Anger and Ignorance

August 6th, 2012 by Sherri Jones
I can't believe how in this day and age there are
still people with the gumption to look at any person, 
but this specific person being me, and saying, "yup, 
you really looked disabled", as he showed a "thumbs 
up" sign when referring to my Mini Van being parked in 
a disability spot, with a disability sign on the front 

This is the same Mini Van I recently purchased to 
transport my new electric wheelchair with me so I could 
perhaps reach out into the world and try to grasp some 
of the life I once had back. The same Van that had my 
supportive back brace sitting on the centre console, 
with my new months collection of pain medications in 
blister packs sitting in Shoppers Bag on the passenger 
floor. The same Van that had my walker in the back, 
the walker that was becoming harder and harder to get 
out of the car to use.

I can't believe how shocked I was to have some random 
person speak to me like that, but more so, how 
shocked I was at my own angry response to this his 

Wow, I really am a VERY pissed off disabled person who 
is mad enough at my "invisible disability" without 
having to tolerate the ignorance, and uneducated gall 
of some man who seems to have a desperate need, 
without being invited or, even regarded in the slightest, 
to open his mouth on something that is none of his 

You know the shocking part? If I had seen this man 
anywhere I would have figured him to be an educated 
man. His entire appearance and presentation speaks 
"intelligence" yet when he opened his mouth all 
appearances are overshadowed by the ignorance in his 
words.... I guess I misjudged this man the same way he 
misjudged me, but I wasn't the one who made that 
comment, or any comment at all until I was insulted 
publicly in front of a busy shopping center for no 

Just because I don't look sick as you see me limping out 
of Grocery Store, doesn't mean I'm not injured or 
suffering. It just means that at that moment my 
medications are working well enough to allow me to be 
stubborn, determined and willing to suffer instead of 
fighting to get my walker out of the back of the van to 
get one stupid box of garbage bags!!

FYI: "Invisible Disabilities" can be just as disabling as 
the person who's disabilities show on the surface. Just 
because I don't show it, or flaunt it doesn't mean I and 
others like me don't suffer.

This was the first time I've ever had to face such 
ignorance since I began to suffer from a rare disease. 
An invisible rare disease at that!!

Really? Will this ever change?

For those of you who've experienced anything like this 
before, you have my deepest sympathies and a heart 
felt apology. Not because I ever remember doing that 
to anyone, but for the misinformed, uneducated people 
out there who feel the need to insult anything they do 
not understand..

No one deserves this, but you never truly know how it 
feels until it happens to you.

"Forgive them Lord, for they know not what they do!"

I guess I have to start believing in that myself..

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