Throughout everyone’s life, there will come a time (and usually more than one) when a difficult situation occurs. Sometimes it is due to not being seen as who you are. At other times something happens, and you are unable to obtain certain rights on your own. Whatever the scenario, know that you are valued for who you are. Read on to learn more about some ways to see others and be seen yourself.
Knowing Your Rights
Everyone is busy, and has a life filled with complications and competing responsibilities. If you live with a disability, you have even more things pulling at you from all directions. That is not to say that you are incapable of handling it. Not at all. What it means is that sometimes you may need an advocate to help you determine what your rights are when you are not fully sure yourself.
Learning about and understanding your rights can be messy and complicated, especially when dealing with government entities. Know that you do not have to go it alone. When you know you deserve more benefits, for example, than you are currently receiving, contact a disability lawyer. They will use their expertise to help you navigate the processes and paperwork to determine what your full entitlements and benefits should be.
Working with a professional legal team with experience in this arena means you have somebody who understands what you are going through. Your lawyer will be able to talk with you and walk you through every step of the process to help you get what you need and deserve.
Unfortunately, not everyone is comfortable with or knows how to interact with someone who lives with a disability. Often this is not due to any sort of bias; instead, it is because of a lack of awareness, exposure, or understanding. People with disabilities have a specific diagnosis that is part of their respective lives. And yet, that diagnosis does not define who they are. It is simply part of them.
The frustrating part for someone with a disability is when that is what the world sees and chooses to judge or label based on that outward assumption or appearance. To further this, some individuals live with invisible diagnoses that make their interactions with the world potentially more complicated. What is important to note here is that if you do not understand someone’s disability, you can always ask them “How can I help you with that?” or “Do you need help with that?” and even better “Can you tell me more about your different abilities to help me better understand them?”
Watch this sensitivity training video to learn more about and get a sense of what people with disabilities live with every day.
Life will keep coming at you from every direction. When you have a good team on your side to help you handle your needs, it will be that much easier. Remember that you are important. It is just as important to never give up while continuing to educate the world about how to best interact with one another, regardless of what you look like or have experienced. And when you need help, it is ok to ask for it so you can live your best life.