How to: Become a pro at asking someone about their disability

Hi everyone! Welcome to another blog!

I have realised it has been some time since we did a ‘how to’ blog so I thought why not bust one out!

When you have a disability, there are many many questions and interesting moments when you are out and about.

I reckon one of the main reasons for the very humorous looks is the fact that us humans are super curious creatures! But we don’t often know the best way of popping the question…… I am talking about popping the ‘why are you disabled’ question.

Some are super blunt with the delivery and then others fumble through it and it weird.

So without further ado, here are my thoughts on this somewhat double edged sword of a question, and how you can go about asking someone about their condition like an absolute pro!

Never Ever Ever Just assume!!!

Photo by Startup Stock Photos from Pexels

Oh man. If I had a dollar for every time a person has said to me “did you hurt your leg?”, or “seems like you have had a rough day. Is your leg bothering you?” I could happily retire.

This good old chestnut is always so tricky to deal with! For years, I was so concerned about making them feel uncomfortable to say anything back, and said yes. The biggest thing I hate is making people uncomfortable and I usually think they simply don’t know how to ask. So instead, they make assumptions.

Let’s just say it is like walking up to a woman and saying ‘congratulations, you must not be far off now!’. Assuming she is pregnant with an actual baby.. But instead is pregnant with a food baby that will be delivered in a few hours….. Too far? But like how insulting is that! And also how embarrassing when they say “I am not pregnant”. Also, how humiliating and degrading to that poor woman.

The golden rule here is to never ever ever assume. That opens itself up to a massive cringe fest on both parties.

It’s all in the disability Education!

Photo by Mark Cruzat from Pexels

I have had kids say to their parents in front of me “what is wrong with her mum? Why is she walking so funny?!”.

I now laugh because how are they meant to know? And I know that they haven’t been educated in the world about disability living… and a little bit of tact. But it isn’t the kids who are the only ones who aren’t educated in the art of disability but the parent’s as well!

What gives that away? It is the shushing, the scolding, or anti-disability comments that gives it away royally!  

This is probably the biggest tip in this how to! It is educate everyone!

How can you educate though? There are so many different resources now that help parents educate their kids on diversity  and perhaps perfect for the adults themselves! Conversation and education starts in the home after all!

Here are a few! to check out!



Not everyone is comfy with being approached. Timing is everything

the best way to ask someone about their disability- a hand on top of another hand. the bottom hand is reading a page of braille.
Photo by Eren Li from Pexels

Now this is the tricky thing! You want to be able to ask someone about their disability. But the fact is not everyone is comfy with being asked. They still may be dealing with accepting it, and being asked about it is triggering.

So in saying that. Timing is honestly everything. As well as the way you ask.

If you see that someone who appears is disabled seems a bit uneasy, I wouldn’t approach them.

If you see someone though who seems happy and makes eye contact with you and says hi, go for it!

But it is all in the way you go about this though! Ask politely. Something like ‘excuse me, I love the hardware! I hope you don’t mind me asking but are you happy talking about your disability? I would love to learn’. That could never go wrong I feel! If someone asked me that I would be more than happy to answer!

Same goes for parents. If your child asks you what is ‘wrong’ with someone and it seems like they wouldn’t mind. Tell your kids ‘there is nothing wrong with them. Why don’t you go and ask politely why they are in a wheelchair’.

It is all in the delivery of the question my friends! Trust me!

Until next week!

check out my other blog on a very similar topic!

1 thought on “How to: Become a pro at asking someone about their disability”

  1. Pingback: Living Abled 2021: Eye-opening Ableism and how to Overcome it with Grace - Living Abled

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