Fred’s Head from APH, a Blindness Blog

Fred’s Head, offered by the American Printing House for the Blind, contains tips, techniques, tutorials, in-depth articles, and resources for and by blind or visually impaired people. Our blog is named after the legendary Fred Gissoni, renowned for answering a seemingly infinite variety of questions on every aspect of blindness.

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Tuesday, May 25, 2010

The Doctor's Hang-ups

by Donna J. Jodhan

Now, I would like to start this blog post by tempering my statement so that I am not misconstrued. Like everything else, there are good doctors and there are not so good doctors. There are friendly doctors and there are not so friendly doctors but there is one thing that I have found in general about the good doctors and it is this; they definitely have some hang-ups when it comes to their blind and visually impaired patients. There are very few doctors that I have met in my life who truly believe that: I work for a living, that I look after myself, that I attended university and obtained a master's degree, that I am capable of thinking and speaking for myself, and that I can understand and make decisions for myself.

My opinion is shared by many other blind and visually impaired persons. So often, whether they are aware of it, doctors on the whole seem to give us an impression that they do not really consider us to be level headed Human Beings. In fact, we often feel that we are being treated as sub par Human Beings. At the best of times, doctors seem to make patients feel like this; mainstream or not. I have met doctors who were quite surprised when they learned that I work for a living. I have met others who were practically falling out of their chairs when they learned that I attended one of the best universities in the world and that I had graduated with an MBA.

These hang-ups are very real and exist way beyond the doctor fraternity. Maybe it is time for us to impart some blindness awareness to our doctors. If any doctor is listening, I am blind. I can think for myself, hear and do for myself, and I work for a living. The only thing different about me is that I am unable to see.

I'm Donna J. Jodhan your friendly accessibility advocate wishing you a terrific day. If you'd like to learn more about me, then you can visit some of my blog spots at:
Donna Jodhan! Advocating accessibility for all:
Weekly Saturday postings on issues of accessibility:
blogs on various issues and answers to consumers concerns:

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