Three Unkind Experiences of Women with Disabilities.
Published on: 06 Apr, 2021
“Know me for my abilities, not my disability. I choose not to place “DIS”, in my ability.”
-Robert M. Hensel
Along with the physical trauma, people with disabilities have had to go through years of mental distress as well. People don’t see them as equals and treat them with inferiority in their mindset. They dismiss their abilities even before knowing them and tread down the path of unkind behavior towards people with disabilities.
Women have already been shouldering the brunt of patriarchal practices and on top of that, we cannot even begin to wonder what women with disabilities have to go through on a regular basis. The snarky comments, the discouraging words, subtle exasperation and pity in their eyes is disconcerting.
Keeping that in mind, this Women’s day, Kindness Unlimited, an NGO working towards spreading kindness wanted to understand the moments when people were unkind to women with disabilities. Three talented women with disabilities who are listed on the platform - Atypical Advantage, submitted an instance where they had to be at the receiving end of people’s callous and upsetting behavior.
Ankita Sharma's deep eyes and beautiful smile can instantly make any shot post-worthy. Her passion for modeling is unmatched and there is certainly no role she cannot do justice to. From glimmering in ethnic suits to slaying in peppy dresses, she can do it all. Adding to her magnanimous beauty is her innate kindness and positivity towards life and all it has to offer! Despite all this, she had to face extremely rude and harsh pique from a cab driver.
“Once a cab driver refused to give me the service, first he agreed to take me so after his consent I sat and suddenly he started yelling and asked me to leave and abused me. A cab driver also told me to book an ambulance instead of a cab to avail the services,” she shared.
Heena Sharma is a person with a Locomotor disability and is restricted to a wheelchair. However, she knew how to open the doors to the world and immersed herself in singing. Heena is passionate about music because music is what gives her happiness and dreams to sing in Bollywood one day. Focusing on the positives, Heena shares her love for traveling and likes getting called an animal lover. No matter how positively one strives to look at life, there are some people who manage to unveil the mounts of unkindness in this world.
“Unkind story in my life was when for the first time I gave an interview for a job and it took 3 hours from my home to reach the location. Without any reason, they did not let me go before 7 pm, even though they knew that I would have to go alone by metro on an electric wheelchair,” she wrote.
Rashmi Rekha Sahu
Rashmi Rekha Sahu is a mentally challenged child, suffering from Trisomy Syndrome by birth with moderate level of Intellectual Disabilities. She found her inner self, confidence and emotional touch because of dance when she was just 4 years old her parents observed that she taps her feet every time she could hear music, even though she understood no words of it. Her parents decided to put her in a Classical Dance School (ODISSI) under the guidance of a prominent classical dance teacher, Late Sri Guru Kashinath Raul. Presently, she is also a member of the self-advocacy team in Odisha, a unit of SASI (SELF ADVOCACY SOCIETY OF INDIA).
“I have Down Syndrome by birth. My parents put me in a normal school. Instead of support, they were unkind towards me. Then, they put me in a classical dance school, where I learned classical- Oddisi. I got many laurels at the state and national level competitions and finally got the National Award in 2011,” she said.
Kindness is spreading sunshine into other people's lives regardless of the weather. Just a little more understanding and kindness can make this world a better place. Rather than judging people and creating unwanted stereotypes, we should strive to be kinder to one another.
Atypical Advantage is constantly working towards bridging the gap of unemployment among people with disabilities. We are trying our best to help them earn livelihood by providing them with a platform where they can get themselves listed and potential employers can browse through the profiles to find the one suitable to their requirements.