My name is Mike and here are 10 Disadvantages To Being Disabled. There are obviously loads more. I couldn’t name them all as the humungous number would break the Internet. In an attempt to be fair I have also posted 10 Advantages of Being Disabled.
I have been disabled for over 25 years. For the last 10, I have been paralysed from the neck down. So I have an idea of the daily challenges faced by the disabled. I think it’s essential to have a sense of humour. I use it as a coping mechanism. Making people smile gives me great pleasure. So this article is written tongue in cheek. Serious content matter delivered with a smile.
1) I can’t scratch my nose
This really does drive me crazy! Just imagine that you have a fly calling on and around your nose. I can imagine right now that you’re probably moving your nose and wanting to itch your face. Just imagine if you could not. It is very very frustrating. To be honest I think that’s why a lot of people who suffer with spasticity pull funny faces. It is because they cannot scratch their bloody nose.
2) Adult naptime is somewhat awkward.
Pity really as I was getting quite good at it
3) Pitying looks from passers-by
I’ve even heard people saying “Aw isn’t it a shame”. I find these very condescending and hurtful. We are not stupid, we do understand what you are saying. I wish people would consider that.
4) People assume I’m stupid
They see that I am physically disabled and assume my brain is too. I have even had nurses talk to me like I have an IQ of the potato, or, that I am deaf. I can assure you I am smarter than a potato, admittedly though not by much. I’m not deaf either, which is quite a surprise considering how loud I listen to my music.
The most annoying thing that happens is people talk to my carer and not me. Again, nurses and doctors frequently do this. I often reply to them “I am not stupid, and at times I am able to put together constructive sentences”. To which they normally look at me like I have done something wrong.
5) I can’t go for a walk on the beach when I’m stressed
I come from a coastal town called Southport. I used to love walking down the beach. Unfortunately, my current method of perambulation is a big heavy electric wheelchair. Now I would like to make it clear taking such a behemoth on to soft sand is a really bad idea.
6) Unable to play with the latest gadgets
I cannot push buttons et cetera so why can do is stare at the latest tech. I mention this in my article 12 Tips for Disabled People. It lists some technology that even quadriplegics can play with. You can find the article here.
7) My medication interferes with my ablutions
It’s something you wouldn’t have considered but being disabled messes up your bowels. Able-bodied people move around which helps food transit through the body. As I don’t move this does not happen.
Also, a lot of medication especially painkillers can cause constipation. I’ve had that bad a few times! It is one of the most painful experiences I have ever been through.
8) Unable to go out on a whim
I can’t suddenly decide that I want to go out for a curry. I would have to organise an adapted taxi and cancel the carers and so on. Then once I get there there is a hassle of getting a table. A lot of restaurants have the tables very close together. This means navigating a wheelchair is really awkward. However, a lot of establishments are very welcoming and helpful.
9) Going on holiday is very difficult and expensive
I require carers, a hoist and air mattress which works out to cost a fortune. For this reason, we haven’t been on holiday for over 20 years.
10) I have to go to bed at the same time every night
I have to be hoisted into bed which requires the assistance of a carer. Of course, these things have to be scheduled in advance. I like to go to bed around 10:30 PM. Most agencies do not want to work late. It’s like I am being awkward with them. I always ask would you go to bed at 9 o’clock?
Of course at the weekends I would like to go to bed later. Sometimes there is a decent film on and I would like to watch the end of it. Unfortunately, that isn’t really feasible in my situation.
The 10 disadvantages above are my opinions regarding my disability. I hope you have learnt a few things and smiled a few times. Please take a look at our other disabled related articles here.