Not everyone is the same we all don’t look a like, like the same things, or even the same people, but then why do most assume blind people are the same? Is it because they regularly don’t interact with them? Is it because media portrays one type of blind person?
I am new to the blind world as a friend of mine jokes, but I doubt that. Media portrays a lot of things badly, but again I might be wrong other disabilities are also shown in bad lights, races, sexuality, and thing else that makes a person different. So I am most likely wrong on that one. But this blog post isn’t about anything but blind people so I will stick with that.
Guide dogs are wonderful, amazing, and in many cases brilliant, but many blind people don’t use them. Does it mean they are bad? Useless? Not that can’t be because of how many do help people. It just simply means they aren’t for every blind person. Some people don’t want to put their life in a set of paws. Some feel they don’t suit their lifestyle, and some shockingly just don’t want to. They use a long cane, or some are still able to get around without anything.
I happen to be a okay cook, hate most house work, and walk into things regularly. I don’t burn things because I am blind, I burn things because I forget about it, or try to do more things at once. Then I am left with hockey puck burgers and debating on ordering takeout Chinese food. I don’t hate house work because of my lack of being able to see. I hate it because I simply don’t enjoy it. I would rather be working with horses, on a laptop, or listening to music. So there is a pile of clothing in my room, my dresser always dusty, and my bed almost always unmade. I walk into things because of my vision, but also because I have always have. I can’t blame me tripping over on vision truly now can I?
Blind people ourselves put we have to be this way, or no way more so then other disabled. Some feel we have to prove to everyone that we never need any help. Which to me is silly everyone even perfectly healthy people need help sometimes. It doesn’t make me a bad blind person(is there such a thing?) to accept the help in the greyhound station, ask where the store front desk is, be honest yes I am lost, or even say something like ”yes I this thing is most likely right in front of me, but I can’t see it, so can you help me?” Some might feel by doing this I am not helping how people see blind people, but the fact is sometimes I just want to get my coffee, or to just get home quick, and put up my feet. Add in the fact I know no matter how much of a able blind person I am some, if not many will still see me as the ”helpless blind girl”.
There are times I do everything in my power to prove them wrong, but other times I just don’t really even see the point. My own mother sometimes yells ”why can’t you do that”, and in the next breath ”why can’t you do this”. Sometimes just trying not to care about it is so much easier.
The other type are the why should we even try types. I have moments where I agree with them some, but the ones who feel being blind is a reason to not even try. They shouldn’t try to find the table, try to cook, try to get a job. And they tend to see it if you are trying to do these things you are wasting your time. They don’t care if people see disabled or the blind as a waste of space because of their actions, because they can get by in life. There are days I feel I have to try to do things with no help. And if I were to take it people would see me as weak. That I can’t give up, and if I were to everyone would see me as a failure and a waste of space.
Most myself included are between what is thought of as the two types of blind people. The difference between the times I feel the need to fight through something, and when I give up and ask for help can be as big as a mountain, or close as the distance between my fingers.
I don’t want to be the example of what a blind person should be to anyone because of how different we are. What pushes me to my breaking point is nothing for someone else. While I hate someone just going up and grabbing my arm, someone else might not mind correcting the person only, or even(and I pray they aren’t out there) not care, but who honestly knows?
I remember when I was little and relatives were saying all gay men were this(I don’t remember what totally, but they were assuming they were all alike). The fact is I have gay friends and none are totally the same to the other. We all are individuals. We all have things we have done that make us different. Even if you can’t see it. Or even if we can’t see.
Just as there are many ways to be a person, there are many ways to be a blind person. Look at how many types of long canes there are, let alone not adding in the new Ambutech Hilites like my own.