Disabled people face challenges like lack of access and accommodations on a daily basis, but you might be surprised by how many of those challenges are presented in the form of ignorance or stigma from people who aren’t educated (or don’t care to be) when it comes to interacting with people different than they are.
If you’re interested in learning, Twitter user Imani Barbarin has your back – she created #AbledsAreWeird to give other disabled people a platform to share their stories and encounters with abled people who reacted in…let’s just say not the most optimal way.
#1. First of all, mind your own business.
Had a pretty lady in a wheelchair flirt with me on the train and I flirted back. When she got to her stop she handed me her number. Some lady across the aisle asked me “Why would lead her on like that they can’t have sex!” #AbledsAreWeird
— Spoony Bard of Trap music (@Tastycakes17) March 18, 2019
#2. You definitely can’t have it both ways.
Neurotypical person: “Lol, I’m sorry I forgot, I’m so ADHD”
Me, a human with ADHD: No worries
Me: “Sorry, I forgot, I have been really overwhelmed and didn’t put it in my calendar.”
Same neurotypical person: “Stop using your ADHD as an excuse.”#AbledsAreWeird
— Andrew (@lAndrewh98) March 16, 2019
#3. Too many teachers behaving badly on this list.
Me: *has chronic migraines and has to wear sunglasses to avoid light when they are about to hit*
Teacher: *fucking rips them off my face* stop trying to be cool and wear sunglasses in class
Me: *TRIES TO EXPLAIN*
Teacher: *sends me to the office* #AbledsAreWeird
— Nick a sad man (@Nick_Ya_Dingus) March 18, 2019
#4. One more time for the people in the back.
Stop saying “You don’t look disabled”
Light travels faster than sound, so you look smart until you’re heard.
Many are not visible. Unless I run around with my MRI scans stapled to my head…#AbledsAreWeird
— Dhani Rose (@DhaniRose) March 18, 2019
#5. Take a look in a mirror, lady.
At a grocery store, a woman made a beeline to me and, w/ no introduction, asked, “Can you have sex?”
It wasn’t the 1st time I’ve been asked this, so I said flirtatiously, “Why, you offering?”
She literally jumped back in disgust and told me I was gross. #AbledsAreWeird
— Kathryne Husk ♿🏳️🌈 (@KathryneHusk) March 17, 2019
#6. I have sympathy rage.
Ableds: Crowd around me in elevator. Stand in exactly the wrong place. Don’t allow me to turn my chair around.
Me: Tries to maneuver my way out backwards w/o running over their feet
Ableds (patronizingly): “Don’t worry sweetie, you’ll get the hang of it eventually #AbledsAreWeird
— Phoenix on Wheels (@phoenixonwheels) March 18, 2019
#7. That’s taking “stranger danger” a bit far.
Approaching a man walking toward me in a hallway. Suddenly he flattens himself along the wall, even though the hall is wide enough for 3 wheelchairs. Like I might suddenly go for his feet or something. #AbledsAreWeird
— Denise DiNoto (@deescribes) March 18, 2019
#8. No, you definitely don’t.
Guy: I know that you dont think you have a lower quality of life bc you’re disabled, but dont you think your life would be better if you could run?
Me: Do you know how many people *can* run, but dont? How’s their quality of life?
Guy: I dont understand your point#AbledsAreWeird
— Stephanie Woodward (@IStepFunny) March 18, 2019
#9. That poor kid.
Teacher: do this thing (run, go outside in certain conditions, use cleaning products, etc.)
Me: I will have an asthma attack if I do that thing
Teacher: liar, do it
Me: *tries to do it and has asthma attack*
— Christina (@raspberryotter) March 16, 2019
#10. Not an excuse.
My wife has a type of Narcolepsy that doesn’t allow her to sleep cycle to function properly, as a result she is frequently tired beyond functioning even after a normal nights rest. Her favorite response from ableds is “I wish I had an excuse to sleep all the time” #AbledsAreWeird
— SW (@AuraOfHeroism) March 18, 2019
#11. Actions speak louder than words.
Neurotypical person when theyre being nice: Just say something when you need help, I’m here for you
NT Person when its not convenient: CANT YOU STOP WITH YOUR STUPID QUIRKS#AbledsAreWeird
— phia🌻 (@mockingjaei) March 18, 2019
#12. What is WRONG with people?
That one time a nurse repeatedly ran into my chair, kicked it, just grabbed it and moved me, etc and finally I asked her to stop, she responded with, “If you don’t like it, you should walk like everyone else.” (Yes, you read correctly, this was a nurse.)#AbledsAreWeird
— Marybeth♿♀️🏳️🌈 (@poeticdiction) March 16, 2019
#13. Definitely not a friend.
i once was told, by someone who i thought was a friend, that: “i wish i had conditions like yours, i’d use so many excuses & get out of so much stuff!” & proceeded to laugh & joke about the things she’d say/do for a long, long ass time #AbledsAreWeird
— sarah (@smithrsarah) March 18, 2019
#14. What does that even mean?
Got an F on paper I worked very hard on. My teacher said even though he couldn’t prove it was plagiarism he knew I had not written it because he had never seen a deaf person write in English like that. #AbledsAreWeird
— Shoshannah Stern (@Shoshannah7) March 17, 2019
#15. You can’t be serious.
— Momo ✨ (@momoxmia) March 17, 2019
#16. This is what middle fingers were made for, I’m pretty sure.
Lady on train: why is your wheelchair pink?
Me: because I like pink.
LoT: But you shouldn’t make a wheelchair pretty.
Me: why not?
LoT: Because then people might think it’s okay to have one.
— Pilgrim (@PilgrimKitty) March 18, 2019
#17. Like a deer in headlights.
People standing on the sidewalk curb ramps and just staring at the incoming wheelchair. “Excuse me!” Does not move. Keeps staring. #AbledsAREWeird
— BuckyHermit 🦆 (@BuckyHermit) March 18, 2019
The more you know!