As a person with "disabilities", I have to constantly advocate and educate the people I come into contact with. Whether it's explaining what a relay or interpreter is, or a brief lesson in lipreading, I have to explain to doctors, school offices, or just the cashier at the local store.
Along with this constant explanation is the inclination to be a good representation of people with disabilities. What do I mean by that? I just feel the need to be on my best behavior because there's a tendency by the general public to pigeonhole people with disabilities together. The thinking that "meet one Deaf person, you've met them all". I was refused a hotel room once because of the owner's bad experience with a Deaf group previously that trashed the place. Sure you try and explain that not everyone is the same, but that usually gets ignored.
Because of this mentality I have to advocate for what I need, not for what "my group" needs. Once in a while I come across someone who insist they know better. "My deaf aunt has great digital hearing aids and she hears everything! Why don't you get some?" "Uh, because I'm not like your aunt? I was born Deaf, not losing it in later life." There's also the occasional comparison to a deaf or blind pet, Seriously? You want to compare my struggles with "Snuggles"?
I really don't mind educating the public and answering questions, but don't forget my Deafblindness doesn't rule my life, so the same song and dance gets old after a while. I do have other interests we can talk about, I have a life you know.
"One finds limits by pushing them" ~ Herbert Simon
Under My Fingertips
I have been Deaf & legally Blind since birth. I've been married to my hearing Husband for 15 years and we have 2 hearing children, a boy 14, and a girl 12.