Dear ableist

Dear bus driver – please don’t shake your head because you have to pull the ramp down for me. If I could hop on with my legs and sit on a seat, trust me, I would.

Dear bus driver – please don’t shake your head because you have to pull the ramp down for me. If I could hop on with my legs and sit on a seat, trust me, I would.

Dear neighbour, please don’t park your car so far on to the pavement that only an able bodied person can sideways crab past it, forcing me to drive out of my way to find a dropped curb, and drive on the road until there is another one to get up, all whilst my children watch on in fear from the pavement.

Dear gentleman at the post office – please don’t tell me, whilst I’m quietly waiting in line for my parcel, that you understand how I feel because you broke your leg when you were 19 whilst playing rugby and used a wheelchair for  6 weeks. This is my forever.

An ableist is patronising

Dear Dad at the play centre – please do not point me out to your children and tell them ‘that’s what happens when you’re not careful on the trampoline’ because I can assure you, they won’t develop Muscular Dystrophy from a vigorous bounce.

Dear young lad at the bar – please don’t congratulate my husband for marrying someone in a wheelchair or commend his bravery for ‘not giving a shit about looks’.

Dear super market attendant – please don’t announce to the entire aisle that they need to move, forging a 5 meter radius around my wheelchair causing everyone to stare. If I need to get past I can politely ask, and they can politely step to the side like they would for an able bodied person.

I don’t need your pity

Dear fellow Mum – please don’t look at me with pity just because there are wheels where my legs should be. Most of all don’t shout at your child for asking what’s wrong with me. Don’t tell them they are rude, just explain that there is nothing WRONG with me and that some people need a little assistance. Children are inquisitive and curious and those questions will help us to teach the next generation that everyone is different, and that within those differences are differences again. To normalise and celebrate difference because no two people are the same. It will teach them not to pity a person who uses a wheelchair or not to fear someone of a different religion. Let’s lead by example and teach the next generation to embrace everybody

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