We’re a curious bunch, aren’t we? Whenever we meet someone a little different, we feel compelled to make stupid comments and ask a hundred personal questions we instantly wish had never left our lips.
Don’t pretend you haven’t been there; word vomit. Face-palm moments.
So, for the sake of everyone – let’s go over the basics of the top seven things you should never, ever say to a disabled person.
1. What’s wrong with you?
Come on, this one is obvious. There’s nothing ‘wrong’ with someone with different capabilities to you. The only thing not right here is your attitude.
2. But you look so good
Comparing the appearance of a disabled person to those without a disability has the same message as saying to a woman, ‘You did good, for a girl”…. Just, no.
3. I’m sorry you’re disabled
What are you sorry for? Pity is patronizing.
4. What happened?
Essentially, you’re asking someone to reveal the intimate history of their lives which could potentially be upsetting. No one should have to explain or justify their disability. Stop being nosy, basically.
5. I know someone else disabled. Do you know them / want to meet them?
No. Being disabled is not a club. And why would anyone have interest in meeting some random stranger – unless they’re cuteeeeee…
6. Why are you alone?
What are you implying here? A person with disabilities is still a capable, responsible adult. Never judge anyone else’s capacity for independence.
7. You are an inspiration
How? Just because someone’s disabled doesn’t mean they’re constantly overcoming adversity. Maybe they got up, went to work and then came home and binged watched Breaking Bad and ate pizza. Just like you.
We’re working towards combating the stigma of disability, click here to see how you can get involved.