15 Annoying Things Strangers Have Said About My Disability


I have osteogenesis imperfecta, and sometimes people say really irritating things to me! Here are a few of them.

1. “Mommy, it talks!” — a 6-year-old after I politely said hi when I caught her staring at me.

2. “How did you get that way?” Uhh… Depends on what you believe.

3. “Does it hurt to break a bone?” What do you think? How about I run over your toes with this 400 pound wheelchair and we’ll see how you feel.

4. “It’s eating chicken wings all by itself!” — Exclaimed by an old lady to an entire food court in a mall.

5. “What a cute baby!” Dude, I’m pretty sure I could teach you curse words you never knew existed. Can your baby do that? I hope not.

6. “Can you stand up so I can pat you down?” — TSA agent. Do you think I’d be in this $78,000 wheelchair if I could?

7. “How old is she?” Directed at my aide while I’m sitting right there. Right there. This happens all the time unfortunately. I’m short, not mute!

8. “Can you have an intimate relationship?” Asked in front of an entire college biology class I was giving a talk to. I mean, I wouldn’t tell you one way or another!

9. “Can I kiss you?” Remember, these are from strangers. Uhh, no!

10. “Would you like to start off with a Shirley Temple?” Asked by a waitress when I was 25 and wearing a strapless shirt and make-up. I promptly answered, “Sure, if you add vodka to it.”

11. “Look, it drives itself!” Yeah, “it” does.

12. “Let me get you a children’s menu.” Let me get you a conk on the head.

13. “Oh you poor thing.” Only monetarily, ma’am. If you’d like to help me, I take donations to my concert-going fund.

14. “You’re going to choke if you eat laying down.” Really? 28-plus years and I’ve only semi-choked once… sitting up. I feel like I got this.

15. “You are so adorable.” And they mean that in the 5-year-old way. I’ll show you adorable…

Follow this journey on Looking Up.

We want to hear your story. Become a Mighty contributor here.

Thinkstock image via iStock.

TOPICS
JOIN THE CONVERSATION

Related to Osteogenesis Imperfecta

Katherine and Lexi.

How I Trained My Own Service Dog

Meet Lexie, my 7-ish year old sheltie/border collie mix and trained service dog. We rescued Lexie about five years ago from the Gulf Coast Sheltie Rescue in Pensacola. She had been found five months prior running on the interstate with a child’s leash attached to her, had heartworms, and knew absolutely no manners or obedience. [...]
Finley walking.

When a Girl in My Son's Class Laughed at Him for Being Short

Last week my son Finley let me know that a girl in his class laughed at him for being short. He told me, “She just said, ‘You’re short! Haha!’” Finley will always be short. Osteogenesis imperfecta is a form of dwarfism. Being short is part of him, and I suspect it will cause some frustration [...]
Hand-drawn woman portrait. Pancil sketch imitation in vector.

The Pain of Rare Disease No One Talks About

The word “disease” has such a common misconception in our society. So much negativity surrounds the idea of a person having a disease. As someone who has fought a rare disease since birth, I understand the powerful of positivity and the importance of educating as many people as possible. I was born with a rare [...]
Image of happy woman using laptop while sitting at cafe. Young african american woman sitting in a coffee shop and working on laptop.

How Blogging for AbilityLinks Helped Me Get Into My Dream School

I’ve tried to start a blog before. Sometimes I would receive a comment or two, but I’d usually lose interest quickly since I felt like nobody cared about what I was writing. I didn’t understand why. I was a teenager with a fairly rare genetic disorder, osteogenesis imperfecta, talking about what my life was like. [...]