I’ve heard this being thrown around a lot lately, and that actually makes me really happy. I’ve had plenty of conversations (or arguments) with people, trying to explain that I do in fact have a disability and that I am not, in fact, faking it.
An individual with a disability is a person who has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities.
The part that is often overlooked is the “mental” part of it.
Yes, I have mental disabilities. I struggle with OCD and have autism, but because I’ve had them for so long, I’ve learned how to cope and cover them up.
People assume that if you have OCD that you need to wash your hands a lot and you like things clean. They don’t know that just thoughts in my mind that are repetitive and sometimes uncomfortable can inhibit my work and social life. There are days when I can’t do anything at work because something threw my day off and I can’t function until I can ease my mind of the thoughts. It affects my productivity and even my relationships with the people I love and is extremely frustrating. I’ve also found that people are so confused when I tell them that I have Asperger’s. Most people think of autism as extreme cases only. I am high functioning and I’ve learned to adapt to other people and situations.
Don’t believe me?
Well, I’ll be working on a short video diary where I will tell you all about how I feel, what my compulsions are, and what is hard for me to do.
Anyways, I’m glad that these invisible disabilities,and other that aren’t even always necessarily mental disorders such as chronic lyme disease, diabetes, and ADD, are starting to get noticed. There are people like me that don’t know what to do. They have people that support them but no one that really understands what they go through. By making it part of the regular conversations, hopefully we can get people the help they need.