Monday, June 10, 2013

Normalization is where it’s at. Please stop making these things so novel…

I’m sure I won’t do an adequate job explaining why things like this and this:
“And it’s a good thing Shay did all of that P90X, since she lives in a sixth-floor walk-up apartment in Brooklyn. When Ali comes to visit, Shay first carries Ali up. Then she goes back for her wheelchair. Then it’s down and up one more time with Ali’s luggage.” (aka, the sweetest thing I’ve ever heard.) - Dani Shay article in May’s CURVE magazine.
get to me so much. But they do.

[Image is orange shoes climbing up metal steps]

Regarding the link, I just can’t stand the notion that because someone has a disability, they somehow deserve love and happiness more than other people. Everyone deserves those things. I’d be fine if the piece was intended to normalize or educate people but I can’t get past the feeling that it’s put across in a way that increases the belief that people with disabilities are somehow less, and should just be looked upon for inspirational value. To me, the day when a guy or girl with a disability gets married and a big deal is NOT made about it, that will be the sign of true progress. And yes, as the significant other to someone with a disability, certain tasks might fall on your shoulders. But the interviewer making a joke out of “What happens when you have a fight and she has to take care of you later?” And then LAUGHS? And then pretends to take the guy’s plate away, saying, “You can eat later.” Are you kidding me?
And regarding the quote? I just can’t. Honestly, if you are dating someone who uses a chair and your apartment residence doesn’t have an elevator, it’s just going to be a thing that happens. The bit about “And it’s a good thing Shay did all of that P90X” is so demeaning. It’s normal to them, why can’t it just be normal to the world? And PS Why is it “the sweetest thing someone has ever heard” for someone’s significant other to help out in ways their loved one needs? Again, why is it comment-worthy at all?

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