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Rooted in Rights

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Why I Believe Cerebral Palsy “Awareness” is Important

Friday, March 24, 2017

I had to explain spastic diplegia to my doctor a few weeks ago. It’s the particular type of cerebral palsy (CP) I have, and it’s also the most common type. I’ve long since given up hope of any general practitioner (GP) I see knowing what CP is, despite the fact that it’s such a common physical

When Emotional Support Becomes Unintended Gaslighting

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Gaslighting is a psychological term used to describe a type of emotional and psychological abuse. Rooted in manipulation, it refers to someone’s attempt to alter someone else’s reality. The term stems from the 1938 stage play and 1944 film, Gaslight – a story in which a husband systematically convinces his wife she’s mentally unstable. In

Learning to Love my Crip, Queer, Female Body is a Radical Act

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

I am a vocal intersectional feminist who shares with others how important it is to love their bodies, even in the face of society’s harmful messages. I can explain the roles of sexism, classism, and racism in eating disorders and body image. I can instruct activists on strategies that aim to resist heteropatriarchal beliefs about

Disability Day of Mourning: We Are Not Burdens

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Trigger warning: this post discusses violence against and murder of disabled people. His name was Marcus Fiesel. He was a smiling three-year-old boy who loved bubbles, flowers, and Bob the Builder.  Like all children, he deserved to be protected from harm, but his mother was struggling. Her boyfriend was beating her and her home was

How the Positivity Only Movement Has a Negative Impact on the Disability Community

Thursday, February 23, 2017

In September of 2012 I was young, hopelessly optimistic, and terrified of the implications two newly diagnosed autoimmune diseases would have on my existence. Having already been diagnosed with bipolar disorder at 18, I knew that this would be a life-long experience. But I did not know how heavy it would be. The weight of

Special Education: A Hindrance to Disability Acceptance

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

“Special education” seems like a little bit too sentimental a name for something with such a utilitarian purpose. In my years of personal experience with the public education system, I have never found reason to describe the experience as special. I’ve had a severe visual impairment for my entire life, and have always received some degree of

Growing Up at the Intersection of Disabled and Immigrant

Thursday, February 16, 2017

I am an immigrant with a disability. When I was five years old my parents decided to move our whole family from Mexico including five kids, two of whom have a disability, to the United States. My mother still talks about the decision that made her stay: having children with disabilities. She dreamed of something

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