1. If you are disabled, people assume you are also stupid. However, an Irish writer wrote an entire book that was much like James Joyce's Ulysses with a stick attached to his head. He pounded out this piece of literary genius one letter at a time. His name was Christopher Nolan.
2. Some people assume that no matter what disability you have, all decisions must be made for you by them. You have no say in your own care. This puts people with disabilities in camp with five-year-olds regardless of functional ability. These people most often have known you for less than a year.
3. People offer you all kinds of unproven cures. This can be entertaining as long as you just smile and remain friendly. Do not spend your money on their products.
4. I got diagnosed at the age of 32. When my now deceased professor saw me at Safeway and asked me how I am doing, I said, "Well, I found out I have MS." He said, "Sex after fifty is pretty good, Alison." I was thirty-two years old. He dropped dead of a heart attack two years later. Good riddance really.
5. When someone found out I had finally been diagnosed with MS, she said, "Well, unlike the rest of us, you don't have to work anymore." Oh sure. I will take a debilitating disease over a normal life of working any day.
6. Right wing Christians tell me I am possessed by demons. I just tell them demons are contagious and touch them. See? I told you so.
7. When I was single, one man said, "I won't take care of you." I wasn't asking him to. Then he said, "Could this happen to me?" Yes, it actually could. And I sort of hope it has really.
8. I get all sorts of negative attention from enabler types. This is better than no attention at all. Well, not really, but sort of.
9. Now and then I scare the crap out of people. They start to feel sorry for me and I say, "We all have to die ." Then they just come up with an excuse to leave. Good riddance.
10. People who are not stupid treat me just like anyone else. Thank God for them. -Alison Whiteman