Things Need to Change!
I try my best to live my life without complaining. However, sometimes this is impossible because there are many things that have bothered me over the years while raising my son. Things that people who don’t have children with special needs will never understand because it doesn’t affect them.
For example, a bathroom that Nate needed to use at a venue, was too small and could barely fit his wheelchair/stroller inside. Then there is the problem I have in malls or department stores that have small or congested aisles that are crammed with merchandise. This makes it impossible for me to push Nate in his wheelchair and shop.
This drives me crazy! (And Yes, I am screaming)
And with that said, here are a few more of my major complaints.
1- Wheelchair accessible doors – I know this is not important for some people, but for me, it is a problem. I can name one outlet mall that in the Northeast section of the U.S., that DO NOT have handicap accessible doors. I have been to their locations in a few states and all are the same. There is no button to open the door. I usually have Nate in his wheelchair, because he is not capable of walking long distances. So, I have to open the door with one hand and I push Nate’s wheelchair with the other. If I’m lucky someone may be coming out or going inside and they will open the door for us. If there is no one around, I am stuck.
There is one major department store that has a label on the door that reads, if you need assistance contact an employee. Well, how am I to do that? There is no phone. Am I to leave my son and go inside, then look for someone to open the door?
And Yes, there are laws (Click here for The American With Disabilities Law). Yet, I’m not sure, how this outlet mall and department store was able to get around that. That needs to change!
2- Handicap Parking – I am tired of seeing people without handicap license plates, or placards sitting in handicapped parking spaces. Not long ago I encountered someone who was sitting in a handicapped parking space. I drove beside them and held up Nate’s blue handicap placard so they could see that I needed to park in the space that they were occupying. Yet, they looked at me and ignored me, continuing their conversation on their phone.
Where was the city’s parking authority when I needed them?
I wish people will respect these designated handicapped parking spots, and STOP PARKING IN THEM. (And Yes, I am yelling!)
3 – Using People with Special Needs as Comedic Relief – I know this doesn’t go in the category of the above, but I just want to say, that I HATE when people make fun of people with special needs. I don’t find it funny when people make comedic relief of those with special needs. It is mean and malicious. Talking, walking, acting, as it is made into a joke, removes the sensitivity and seriousness of this issue.
People need to stop doing it now. So if you find it necessary to make someone’s disability into humor – DON’T. YOU ARE NOT FUNNY!
And that is it….for now. Perhaps there will be a Part 2 to this list. Or hopefully it will not, as we work to make this world a place where it cares for individuals with special needs. Making it a world where their needs are met and they can live comfortably and happily.