Unless you have a handicap yourself, it can be impossible to understand the struggles people with disabilities face. While most people have some idea, these individuals overcome more challenges than most people ever think about.
These struggles extend beyond daily activities to social stigmas, the ability to communicate, and difficulties in the workplace. If you’ve ever wondered what someone with a disability might face on a day-to-day basis, then here’s what you need to know.
Praise and Pity
Imagine hearing applause when you grab an item on the top shelf of a grocery store or tie your shoe. Simple tasks like these can be challenging with a disability, but the praise and pity that people give is humiliating.
While tasks like these can be difficult, people with disabilities aren’t asking to be applauded when they complete them. They just want to be treated like everyone else. If you wouldn’t expect pity or praise for doing something, then don’t give it.
Mental disabilities can cause some individuals to struggle with some tasks others take for granted. Managing finances is one of those tasks, and several disabled individuals need continual help throughout life to ensure their money is in order.
When caretakers pass away, many of these individuals end up needing a bankruptcy lawyer after some time. There are state programs that can help, but most must be set up by caretakers in advance. Checking, savings, and credit cards can also be challenge areas depending on the severity of the disability.
Physical and mental disabilities can make maintaining any form of relationship difficult. These individuals may have difficulty communicating their thoughts and feelings, require extra alone time to avoid overstimulation, or face challenges that most couples do not.
At the same time, people may not be open to maintaining a friendship with disabled individuals. Some fail to overlook the disability, while others try too hard to overcompensate for it or shy away from it. It’s important for disabled individuals to find friends who treat them just like anyone else.
Finding employment is often a daunting task, especially as disabilities get more severe. When there is a suitable position open, employers often discriminate during the hiring process or fail to provide adequate accommodation that allows the disabled employee to perform their job function.
Discrimination is hard to fight without any hard evidence, but individuals can rely on ADA defense lawyers to combat a lack of accommodation. There are even ADA website compliance lawsuit filed for not being inclusive enough, which can be easily avoided. It isn’t uncommon for disabled employees to deal with harassment from ignorant coworkers, either.
Have you ever walked into a crowded room and felt as though everyone was staring at you? Imagine that feeling 24/7 and you can begin to understand this struggle. People often stare at those with disabilities, while others gawk. It can make anyone feel like sideshow attraction.
Most people don’t understand what it’s like to live with a disability. Instead of admitting that to a disabled friend, they tend to patronize them by pretending to understand or saying phrases like, “I know it must be hard.” Meanwhile, all anyone with a disability wants is for someone to just listen to them.