Five Misconceptions about Blind People

1.  They can’t see anything. Counterintuitive, right? But truthfully, only a small number of blind persons can’t see anything at all. Many of us have terrible acuity, or very narrow feels of vision. Some can only see motion, or light. There are many degrees of blindness, and only a small percentage of them is the darkness you are imagining.

2.  They don’t want to talk about it. Nope. We already know we’re blind, and in as much as it creates understanding and inclusion, we’re happy to talk about our vision. I promise. Of course, we want to talk about other things too. Just like you.

3.  They aren’t smart. Here’s the problem, and one of my biggest gripes. Blind people miss visual cues, so there’s some stuff they can’t know. Our inability to see is not the same as an inability to understand. I know it can look inattentive. It’s anything but.

4.  They are victims. All people are on a sliding scale with this one. You probably know people who feel victimized by rainclouds and others who grateful for their messy, complicated lives. Feeling victimized isn’t about blindness.

5.  They are heroes. People are on a sliding scale with this one too. They may be heroes, but it probably has nothing to do with their blindness.

The only true assumption you can make about a blind person is that their vision is crappy. Anything else you discover is probably more about the person and less about the blindness.


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