Social relationships can be a challenge for everyone, I think that one of the hardest things about having a physical disability, is that it is visible. The harsh reality of society, is that it is the norm for most consciously or not to shy away from things that are perceived as different. In the case of people with a physical disability that would be their mobility equipment.
Social Relationships, Disability and Invisibility
How do you then overcome this natural sense of invisibility? I can only speak to the things that have worked for me but they have just that, worked for me.
Giving Back to Others
I have learned that I feel less invisible and thus feel a sense of improvement in terms of social relationships when I give back to others. For years I volunteered at a nursing home, visiting elderly folks who generally didn’t have family in the area. Truth is it was beneficial to both of us. I learned a lot about humanity by listening to their stories and personal histories and in turn giving something back to the community
Finding an Online Community
When I was a teenager, I discovered and turn to ability online. For those of you that don’t know what ability online is, I invite you to read this previous post dedicated to it. By logging on to ability online I found people like me: children, teenagers, adults, parents, and professionals who for some reason found common interest in the community that is ability online. For me as a teenager that meant other teens who for one reason or another, disability or illness found themselves socially isolated, and it was this initially brought us together. Because of the online platform, it didn’t matter how person looked, or how they communicated all that was eliminated and allowed you to truly get to know people for who they are: people first disability second.
These are just two ways I have personally found to be effective in improving social relationships I am interested in knowing your thoughts on this subject
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