Friday, January 29, 2010

Perspectives: Katie

This interview is between my cousin Katie and me. We are extremely close, so much so, that we are practically sisters. I thought her thoughts would offer an honest perspective on being close to someone with a disability.

Ann: What do you think of when you hear the term Cerebral Palsy?
Katie: I think of you because you are the only person I am close to who has Cerebral Palsy. I think of you as having the same mental capacity, but not the same physical capacity.

Ann: What is the most respectful term to use to describe someone who has Cerebral Palsy?
Katie: I just say that someone has Cerebral Palsy. I say someone has a disability because I know, firsthand, how people are sensitive because of you.

Ann: What do you think of using the term differently-abled to describe someone who has a physical disability?
Katie: I've never heard that term used before. I think it's okay if it doesn't insult someone, but if it does you shouldn't use it?

Ann: Have you ever seen me treated differently in public because of my disability?
Katie: No, but I've seen little kids and people stare.

Ann: What do you think is the typical stereotype for someone with a physical disability?
Katie: This is a deep one. I think that (i don't think necessarily) it is that they are not able to do things as quickly, or at all. This stereotype may carry over into people's perceptions of that person, thinking they may not be able to do things mentally as well, which is not true at all.

Ann: What do you think of the media's perceptions of disabilities?
Katie: The first thing I think of is Glee. They try to make the shows diverse. i don't think they necessarily look down on people with disabilities.