Living with Invisible Disability?

KRCL 90.9 is my local community radio station. I am a sustaining member and have been listening to this station for over 25 years. One of the programs I enjoy is called RadioActive. In honor of Disability Awareness month speakers recently discussed invisible disabilities. My own arthritis, Hashimoto’s disease, and titanium parts that allow me to walk are hidden to others, though each of these conditions require constant care, pain management, and remind me minute by minute that I have limitations. I relate well to the term invisible disability. A representative from an advocacy group called the Disabled Rights Action Committee Utah shared resources on the radio show to help those of us that may experience discrimination and misunderstanding from those we encounter on a regular basis.

Did you realize that 1 in 5 people worldwide live with a disability and 45% of Americans live with one or more chronic conditions? Many of these conditions are not visible to the naked eye…hence the term ‘invisible disability’. This can be problematic when needing a handicap restroom, using a handicap parking spot, or accessing health services. Personally, I have been confronted, reprimanded, and treated harshly more than once when using a handicap stall simply because I don’t “look the part” of someone with limitations. Click the link below to hear the radio program in it’s entirety and better understand the wide range of disabilities and how we can better treat one another with dignity.

Be Well! ~Tiffany