Ableist language and ideas are deeply embedded in our culture, often to such an extent that many people don’t even consider the ways in which they perpetuate it. On Sunday, the hashtag #YouMightBeAbleistIf starting popping up all over Twitter attached to all the cliches, stereotypes, and ableist nonsense that folks have been confronted with all of their lives.
Scrolling through will really make you think about how what you do and say might be making people feel excluded—or, even worse, actually excluding them from everyday life. Points about accessibility, medical treatment, and job opportunities get brought up along with all the ableist phrases and behaviors that often get taken for granted or brushed over.
It’s a great chance to consider how to be better because as many people wrote, we’re all taught to be ableist from a young age. Now, it’s time to unlearn it all.
#YouMightBeAbleistIf your response to a disabled person in leadership not being able to attend functions that are inaccessible or due to their disability is "maybe someone else who is more physically able should do this job" not finding/creating supports.
— LaurieBertramRoberts- I Fund Abortions✊🏽🏳️🌈♿️ (@smartstatistic) December 29, 2019
#YouMightBeAbleistIf you tell disabled people their disability, which affects literally every single thing they do, shouldn't be a part of their identity but your health/workout/diet/pyramid scheme is a major part of yours.
— Sam Bosworth ♿🔥🤘 (@_SamBosworth) December 29, 2019
*Get some fresh air, you'll feel better
*You don't "look" sick
*It's all in your head
*Church will help
*Just pray about it
*You were fine yesterday
*You're doing this to yourself
*The meds make you this way
*Just force yourself to do it
— Liddle Jessica Savage 🤷🏻♀️ (@losingminddaily) December 29, 2019
#YouMightBeAbleistIf You tell me (or yourself) how STRONG I must be to "deal with" my disabled kid. I'm RAISING my child, same as every other parent.
— Mommabard#BlackLivesMatter (@M0mmabard) December 29, 2019
#YouMightBeAbleistIf if you told me I got into college or law school because of my disability.
This happened to me in HS; a girl said “you’ll get into college. Colleges love that crap; you could’ve been born a vegetable and you’ll still get in.”
…we were in the same classes.
— Haley Moss, Esq (@haleymossart) December 29, 2019
— René Brooks | Black Girl, Lost Keys | ADHD (@blkgirllostkeys) December 29, 2019
#YouMightBeAbleistIf you you regularly ignore the boundaries of disabled folks to "help". You're not doing it for us if you can't be bothered to ask first, you're just doing it to make yourself feel like a hero
— a haunted doll 🕸🎃 (@squiddcandy) December 29, 2019
#YouMightBeAbleistIf you dont have a disability.
Yeah, I said it. Able bodied and neurotypical people have ableism so ingrained that its hard to find one who isnt, even if its ignorance and not malice.
So try harder. Do better. Assume you're ableist and work from there.
— Charlie Knight [they/them] (@CKnightWrites) December 29, 2019
— Sophia Narwitz (@SophNar0747) December 29, 2019
#YouMightBeAbleistIf you think a subminimum wage is ok bc “at least they have something to do”
— Dr. #TheWorkAintOver (@4WheelWorkOut) December 29, 2019
#YouMightBeAbleistIf you congratulate every teen taking someone with a disability to prom. They don’t need medals for treating people as human
— 🌊tilly (@afIeabag) December 29, 2019
— 🧡 Amanda Dillon ♿️ (@adillon845) December 29, 2019
#YouMightBeAbleistIf you tell me you 'don't see me as disabled'.
You're not seeing ME. The disabilty is part of me and I refuse to hide it to make other people less uncomfortable.
— Lauren Alexandra (happy spooky season babes!) (@CrippledChic) December 29, 2019
— Lesley Handel (@LesleyHandel) December 29, 2019
#YouMightBeAbleistIf you think someone’s ability to contribute economicly is what makes them a member of society.
We are all human and belong in society even those who will never be able to ‘get a job.’
— Mandiy Savage (@celticorion) December 29, 2019
#YouMightBeAbleistIf you scapegoat people with psychiatric disabilities in conversations about homelessness, substance use, and gun control.
— Helen Rottier (@helenrottier) December 29, 2019
#YouMightBeAbleistIf you tell disabled people that they shouldn't "let" their disability stop them from doing X thing.
Physical limitations are not conscious decisions we make and then decide which ones will "let" stop us.
— Spoonful (B.L.M) (@spoonful116) December 29, 2019
#YouMightBeAbleistIf you require someone to disclose their disabilities to you in order for you to "believe" them.
— 💀Lichcraft💀 (@DAJIRUHU) December 29, 2019
#YouMightBeAbleistIf you think a disability or illness "takes away someone's dignity"
we're always worthy of your respect, no matter how ill or disabled we are.
— public universal fran (they) ♿ (@franrambles) December 30, 2019
You touch/push/interfere with a disabled person or their equipment/aids without consent. #JustAskDontGrab
You think disabled people are strong/brave/inspirational for doing everyday things
You get defensive/huff when ableism is pointed out #TakingTheDis
— Sarah J Waters 💙 ♿🌈Socially Distance. Save Lives (@Mad_Morag) December 30, 2019
#YouMightBeAbleistIf you try to tell a disabled person what is and isn't part of their disability.
I had an ex who told me, "It's not about can or can't, you just won't." because I couldn't go up and down stairs multiple times a day due to my fatigue. I've fallen down them twice
— D_Human23 (@Dhuman23) December 30, 2019
— rosemary’s baby bangs (@am_lehr) December 29, 2019