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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Wednesday, July 06, 2011

New Ways of Identifying

by Donna J. Jodhan

Now that I am barely able to see, I constantly have to find and come up with new ways of identifying things to others. It is no longer possible for me to identify things by color so I need to let my fingers do the identifying for me.

The other day for example, I told my brother that his sweater was hanging in the coat closet and when he asked me which sweater we both hesitated at the same moment. His first words were "O, you don't know which one" but my comeback was "the woolen one, with long sleeves, and workings on the front."

When I was able to see, and had enough vision to identify colors, my mom and others usually identified things to me through color. It was the yellow book, the black shoes, the bottle with the green liquid, the tin with the red top, and so on. Now, I have to come up with other ways to identify things to them and in turn, they are constantly coming up with ways to identify things to me.

We usually communicate in terms of size, shape, texture, and where a certain thing can be found. More work for both sides but it works just fine. When I was a kid and as long as I can remember, my mom and I have used a very unique way for us to identify things to each other. We identify things through incidents and memory and who has given something to us. So for example; it's Gayle's bag because my sister-in-law Gayle gave me this particular bag. It's Granny's dress, because the dress belonged to Granny. It's mom's perfume because mom gave me the perfume, and so on.

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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