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My opinion on feminism

Hey, everyone, I hope you’ve all had a nice weekend and been able to enjoy this lovely weather that we’ve been having of late. Yesterday was my Gran’s 80th birthday so me my mum, dad and two brothers along with our extended family and some of her very close friends went down to a very posh restaurant not far from where she lives and had a real good time having fantastic food, drinks and conversation. It was interesting showing some of my family members my tattoo because they obviously didn’t expect me to get one and some of them thought it was fake, so that was fun. Overall it was a joyous occasion, and everyone seemed to have a nice time catching up with others and just celebrating this milestone with each other.

As you can probably tell from the title, I’ll be talking about my own opinions on feminism and what it means to me. I’ve always believed that people should be allowed to express their personalities in the ways that make them feel comfortable and this is no exception for women.

I’m one of these people that are very thankful for everything that feminism has done for us so far. Living in a world where I can vote, work, have equal pay and own my own house is very liberating. However, I’ve heard and read about the bitchiness and extremism of third wave feminism. Now, I understand that we still have a little way to go regarding total equality of the genders, I’m not just talking about people who identify as cisgender (identifying as the gender you were born, either female or male) I’m talking about all identifications of gender here.

It is my understanding and opinion that people should be able to identify however they feel comfortable. If that means they are cisgender, transgender, gender fluid, etc. then no-one should be able to tell them to identify otherwise to fit into social norms. Society should adapt so that all identification and presentation of gender is normal rather than clinging onto an old fashioned and frankly out of date idea of what it means to be male or female.

In my opinion being female is what you make of it. If you like makeup and fashion, then don’t hide away make sure you go out to the nines and wear the latest trends that suit you and make you feel happy and have a full face of makeup every day. If you’re a sporty or tomboy kinda chick then take no flack from anybody and rock that look till the day you die.

Only you can decide how you want to look or present to the world outside while taking no shit from anyone else. We are all the people who make the definition of women regardless of whether we wear pink and bright lipstick every day or not.

Regardless of what we wear, whether we shave every day or slap on a full face of makeup, it’s about being strong willed and passionate about life. It’s about knowing our self and staying true to that without forcing anyone else to change and become an identical match.

We should never hate on other women or those who identify as female just because they are different from ourselves. We should celebrate the vast diversity and strength of woman as a whole and respect each other for being strong individuals for our intellect rather than our looks.

We all have something powerful and unique to offer this world and lowering ourselves to the petty state of bitching over how we look makes us weak and demoralised. We are sometimes, sadly, more concerned with people’s outwards appearance than the credibility of what’s going on in their head and hearts.

For example, someone may be covered in tattoo’s, dressed like a goth and have multi coloured hair but be the most moral and sweet natured person imaginable who is reliable, hard working, kind, caring and loyal to a t. On the flip side, someone may look like a respectable person but have a nasty streak to them. Judging a book or human in this case, by its exterior is very harmful to both parties. You may miss out on a world of knowledge, experience and positive life changing experiences because you cross the street from one person who looks like a ‘freak’.

Just because we aren’t a replica of each other doesn’t mean we’re not worth a look in. We’re all here to live the life that we choose and how we choose to present ourselves is just one way of fulfilling our sense of self-identity and happiness. We shouldn’t be going around hating on other women or bitching about them just because they are wearing a bikini or wearing something that we wouldn’t choose to or do something that is seen as unfeminine or even masculine. We all have our paths to follow, and they aren’t the same one if you can believe that. We should be saying ‘yes you go, girl, you wear and do what makes you feel empowered as not only a female but as a human being.’

Life is challenging enough without the pressure of others to fit into certain stereotypical social moulds that are as rigid as black and white. We live in a world full of vivid colour, expression and experience that’s too short to try and pretend to be something we’re not. So instead of putting each other down we should stand united and fight for what is morally and therefore should be socially right.

Whoever we are we were born to do great things in life no matter how small. That is what being a woman/female means. Following your path, being strong, standing up for yourself and doing what is morally right and expecting to be treated with dignity and equality for your characteristics and personality rather than your gender.

So yes these are my personal opinions on the matter and I hope you’ve enjoyed this post, until next time my lovelies I shall love you and leave you :).

I’ll decide what it means to be a woman

Hi everyone I hope you’ve had a good weekend so far and enjoying the lovely weather. Let’s just hope this weather keeps its steam up and lasts us until September.

Today I want to talk to you about how I feel about being a woman in today’s society. I won’t be writing from any particular political or feminist movement viewpoint per say. I only want to write down my feelings and thoughts on my personal experiences and views.

I want to start off by saying that I’ve not always been a girly girl nor will I ever be, needless to say, that I’m not the definition of a tomboy or a butch lesbian either. I am in a very comfortable middle ground. And you know what? I’m perfectly happy with that. I don’t feel the need to always conform to societies view of what a woman should or shouldn’t be.

I may not always be happy in my skin. I sometimes wish I was taller I stand at a mere 5′, and that can be rather difficult when trying to reach things on higher shelves. I wish my boobs could be a more rounded shape as I feel they are rather cone shaped at times. Other than that I’m pretty much happy with the way I look. I don’t feel the need to change my appearance with a shit tonne of plastic surgery or liposuction, makeup or clothing just to please someone else’s ideals of beauty.

I’ll wear clothes that make me feel comfortable, leave my hair as an unruly mess, or straighten it if I want to. I’ll only wear makeup if my skin is nasty or if I can ever be bothered to do it, which is hardly ever and I’ll only shave if I’m going swimming. See I don’t feel the need to wear the latest fashions have my eyebrows constantly on point, have a full face of makeup every day or be completely hairless just because it’s considered acceptable and appropriate for women to do so.

Living under the thumb of social norms and pressure is a constant nightmare and doesn’t do anyone any good. We have all become so used to judging others by the way they dress, act and present themselves. The constant bombardment of women’s magazines, celebrity elevation and the media, in general, has brainwashed us all, me included. None of us can pretend that even on the most subconscious level we don’t want to constantly try and present the best sides of ourselves.

The explosion of social media sites such as Instagram, snapchat and Pinterest and the many filters that come along with them have created a generation of people who feel the urge to post their whole lives to the world. The emulation of peers and celebrities is such an attractive draw for so many that we forget to be who we are at times

Yes, I’ll admit that I have been a victim of this overshare drive. I have ranted on Facebook or posted a bazillion holiday snaps and even done a terrible job and trying to improve selfies. I’ll admit that I’m one of many who wants to prove to others that I’ve having a fabulous life and I’m looking good while doing it.

In fact, I’m just a regular person. I binge watch shows I listen to the music that I’m into I read, just a little bit you understand; I spend most of my time at work or home and occasionally meeting up with my closest friends. And that is the boring truth of it. But you know what? I’m content with it as of this moment in time. So it may not be the most adventure filled life, but it’s the one that suits me best and I shouldn’t have to go round changing anything about it to please others. If I do so, it’ll be for my development, growth and fulfilment.

My life shouldn’t be dictated to by others based upon my gender. Why should I be seen as any less than what I am because I have breasts instead of a penis? Sure there are obvious physical differences that can lead to differences in physical strength and women are far more likely to be empathetic and nurturing than men. However, that’s not to say that these ‘rules’ or stereotypes apply across the board in 100% of the male or female population.

For example, there are many women in athletics who are bodybuilders, weight lifters, martial artists and so on and so forth. On the other end there are plenty of men who work in the care sector, work with children, are nurses, or provide valid and crucial emotional support to those around them. Not all women love shopping, I know I get tired and frustrated if I can’t find what I want within two seconds flat. I can only sustain shopping if I’m plied with chocolate and fizzy drinks or better yet alcohol. Not all men are sporty, and women can and do love sex just as much as men. Men can and are sensitive, and some females may be emotionally ‘stunted’ or strong.

It is simply that both women and men will use their unique physicality and emotional state of being to be able to apply particular physical or emotional strengths and capabilities that are unique to them but may be perseverance as uniquely male or female rather than individual. The thing is we seem to teach and ingrain these traits that boys don’t cry and girls can’t love sports or maths and science from a very early age in life. This is a very damaging and intellectually stunting trait we have as a whole.

I wrote an entire post about the fact that I do taekwondo. I have also mentioned on numerous occasions that I’m not the tallest person in the world. However, this advantage of short stature is surprisingly beneficial for me to maximise my power if ever I needed to defend myself. I may not be the most physically powerful person in the world, but I can use everything that I have and am to maximise every chance I can take. I can utilise what I know works best for me to achieve the power I know I’m capable of.

Life’s about accepting that, yes there are certain benefits and disadvantages to both genders but accepting and fully realising who you are as an individual and not simply falling into gender stereotypes because it’s ‘easier’. Learning who you are, how you react and grow is a life long lesson and if we ever think we’ve stopped learning then we become stale, emotionally, socially, intellectually out of date individuals.

I’m not the same person that I was when I was 16 or even 18. Nor would I want to be. I mean the essentials of my personality are the same, but I’ve grown up, matured, changed for the better. I know that I’ve got a whole lifetime to explore and expand my horizons, broaden my mind and expand and feel more comfortable in the person that I’ll morph into.

I know that I’m a socialist and I love working with children. That’s a part of my personality that has grown and become more developed. With that knowledge, I can focus my energy and time on the tings that are important to me and that I want to improve upon by looking at different avenues in which to develop my knowledge and skills.

Playing to my strengths sets me aside from both gender stenotypes and others. I’m not an identical match of some other random woman or man that I’ve never met before. My reactions, beliefs, emotional and intellectual outlooks and general state of being is purely me. Yes, I can be influenced by others and different information and how I’m feeling mentally and emotionally, but that’s part and parcel of being … wait, get this? … HUMAN. Not merely FEMALE but HUMAN. We all view the world differently and will have our unique outlook regarding a different state of affairs.

I should never be made to feel like a second class citizen in any situation just because I’m female. I’m a human being who deserves exactly equal rights as every other person in the world. I should be allowed to feel that I can do and be whatever I want regardless of my gender. If girls want and can be the next Neil Armstrong then why shouldn’t they be? If a boy wants to be the next BeyoncĂ© why can’t he?

Pink isn’t my favourite colour, I don’t and can’t always do my makeup to perfection, I don’t keep up with the Kardashians. I’ve never even bothered with the latest diet fads or been obsessed with what a celebrity is wearing or who they’re dating. I never had a Barbie when I was younger preferring to climb trees instead.

Don’t even get me started on commercials, especially those relating to house cleaning products or perfumes. Why is it that any house cleaning product is always advertised with women using it? So what we’re supposed to be the stay at home housewife and mum raising the kids? Like fuck off mate, men are perfectly capable of doing some hard graft in the kitchen or bathroom. And why is it that perfume adds always show a man and a woman always being all sexy with each other? First of all, mate that seems to me that it says that if you don’t have a good perfume, you can’t be sexually attractive which is just a dumb and illogical idea. Secondly, why is it always a man and a woman? How about representing more lesbian, transgender and gay relationships in commercials? And finally why are men and women portrayed as merely sexual beings anyway in those adverts? WHY? For all that is holy WHY?

This divide we still have between genders is astonishing. Although It is hidden and shrouded in ‘advancements’ we, even in the western world have a long way to go before gender equality is neutralised. Even down to names women still get hollered at them from some idiot who will think he’s being all emasculated by shouting ‘baby’, ‘gorgeous’, no I think you’ll find my name is Ellie and unless I’m in a long-term committed relationship with someone I won’t answer to anything else.

So before I carry on too much more and bore you completely to death with my massive ramble, I shall love you and leave you until next time my lovelies. :).

You have a disability and you work?

Hello all, I hope you’ve had a good week and that your weekend has been lovely so far. I am rather excited at the moment as there is only one more week before the summer half term so only one more week of work whooo.

Why is it that there is still a significant gap between the number of people with a disability who are unemployed in relation to the number of non-disabled people who are unemployed? According to reports by Scope, one of the UK’s leading disability charities, fewer than 5 in 10 disabled people are employed compared to 8 in 10 non-disabled people.

Figures show that around half of people with disabilities who are in employment are fearful that they will lose their job as a result of their disability.

The stereotype that having a disability means that you are in a wheelchair is still present in today’s society. Meaning that many individuals who have an ‘invisible’ disability struggle with the issue of when or if to reveal to colleagues or employers that they have a disability.

Invisible disabilities and long-term illnesses can include but are not limited to, visual or hearing impairments, high functioning ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder), Mental illness, chronic pain or migraines, arthritis, asthma, epilepsy and diabetes.

It can be a tough decision when entering a new job or going for an interview whether you should disclose the fact that you have a disability. Although we have the equal rights act in the UK, which makes it illegal to discriminate based upon disability if an employer is aware of your disability it makes it that much harder to get or hold down the job.

This may be because employers are unsure or more unwilling to employ someone who needs that extra amount of reasonable adjustments as they may feel it may incur additional costs for the company. Employers may also consider that someone with a disability may not be able to carry out all the functions of the job and may put extra pressure on their colleagues.

These viewpoints are never the reason given when a disabled person doesn’t get the job. Thus the employer is not showing direct discrimination. However, it can be a form of indirect discrimination, especially if the individual is qualified and perfectly capable of carrying out the duties of the job.

I believe that it has always been in my best interest not to disclose my disability in an interview setting. Thus I am not allowing the employer to have that hold over me. If I get the job and I feel comfortable enough to disclose my disability, then I will do so. However, I have never had to do so as of yet.

I know that there will be certain jobs that I’ll never be able to do because of my visual impairment. I’ll never be a surgeon, a firefighter or police officer; I’ll never be a pilot, and I’ll never be able to fight for queen and country. However, I don’t want to mooch off the state either, and I especially don’t want to fall into one of the stereotypical ‘blind’ jobs.

Two of the most common ideas about what blind people can do would be office or IT work. Spoiler alert; not all of us like or are good at either of those types of jobs. Just because we are visually impaired doesn’t mean we instantly know how to code or want to sit on are arsses between the hours of 9 and 5 for five days a week.

The one thing to remember about any individual with a visual impairment is that we’ll have our set of unique talents and passions. We’ll want to do a job that satisfies our needs and wants. Well want to know we have the ability to progress and learn in our jobs while having fun.

For example, I work in a school for children with moderate to multiple and profound learning disabilities. Due to the nature of their ages and disabilities, the children can present with a variety of challenging behaviours. I can hear you all now thinking, ‘wait but how can you help if you can’t accurately see what the children are doing?’ Well, you know what I make my adustments.

In the playground, I’ll walk around more so that I can then get closer to where children are. In the classroom it’s easy enough because it’s a smaller environment; therefore, I don’t notice my sight being a massive issue. Of course, I may miss things but work as a teaching assistant means you’re always part of a team, and I know that my colleagues will always cooperate with me and not against me.

I have also found that working in a SEN school is fast paced and always different therefore everyone will find things challenging and will miss things but that’s the beauty of working in a team that works well together. Others will always be around to notice what you may miss.

When deciding whether or not to disclose a disability, it’s entirely up to each person. Sometimes unexpected work situations may crop up that are related to or complicated by your disability. It’s times like those that it may be pertinent to disclose your disability to your employer or at least your colleagues to see if different solutions can be found to help you cope and improve.

Unfortunately, we still live in a society where we need to prove our worth and our capabilities. The general public still has a horrible lack of knowledge regarding disability and its diversity due to the lack of positive interaction with individuals with a disability.

The media is starting to improve or at least make steps in regards to improving its portrayal of disability. However, there is still a tendency to focus on one of the two extremes ‘Disability Porn’ (calling or viewing someone as inspirational in part or solely based on their disability) or seeing disabled people as incapable, vulnerable and who need protecting and looking after.

Yes, it is true that those of us with any form of disability will need extra support in certain situations. Accepting this help does not make us weak, vulnerable or inspirational it just makes us who we are. We are people who have different challenges and find different ways of coping with those challenges.

We are still, intelligent, passionate, unique individuals who want to achieve happiness, find love, earn our own money, have an as independent life as possible just like anyone else. However, cringy and cliched that is to say and hear it’s the truth.

We don’t need or want others pity as it doesn’t help you or us in any way possible. It makes us feel uncomfortable, and you look like a bit of an idot, to be honest. The reaction of shock or surprise that we can do things by ourselves, lead a normal life and even work and travel is just outrageous and outdated although not a surprise to any of us who have been on the receiving end of that reaction.

The public needs a more normalised and positive outlook on disability and its variety. Employers need to be educated on disability and how it may affect employees and need to consider and review their disability employment policies if they even have any at all. With reasonable adjustments, some don’t even have to be expensive or brought at all, people with disabilities can work. Discussing, Reviewing and continuously updating techniques and allowing open communication between employers and employees can be a vital and active way of allowing companies to move forward in their understanding, acceptance and ability to help those employees who are disabled.

It does sadden and anger me that we still have to fight on a daily basis to prove to people that we aren’t a burden on society and that we are capable of working and living independently. Disability rights have come so far, and yet we still have such a long way to go regarding understanding, genuine acceptance.

Of course, there will be people out there who, for whatever reasons won’t be able to work. There will also be people who will be idiots and think they can abuse the system and get things handed to them on a silver platter because of their disabilities. For those of us who want to and can work, let’s strive to empower and educate others. Let’s keep on fighting until stigma is demolished; small minds are opened, and equality truly means just that, equality and equal access for all.

For now my lovelies I shall love you and leave you. :).

LGBT marriage and families

Hi everyone I hope you’ve had a good week and that your weekend has been beautiful and relaxing or busy but fun. Today’s post will be another rant from me. I will be focusing on a very right wing and largely religious based viewpoint. I will be splurging my hatred of the idea’s that members of the LGBT community shouldn’t be allowed to get married or raise children because it’s ‘in the interest of the children’.

Whenever I hear stories or read articles relating to this issue I can’t help but let out an external sigh, while inside I’m dying just a little bit more. These extreme viewpoints aren’t overly common in today’s British society but are still frequent enough to be newsworthy every so often. In my opinion, they are very harmful, hateful and backwards thinking. It is my opinion that people who believe or endorse these beliefs are concerned only with the ways of tradition and can’t get themselves out of their heads enough to accept acceptance and equal rights for all people of different sexualities.

The main argument made is that the ‘sanctity, tradition and fundamental building blocks’ of heterosexual marriage are weakened by allowing the LGBT community to have the same rights to marriage and God forbid allowing us access to the moral and financial responsibilities of raising children.

Apparently, we are not worthy enough to be viewed equally by God and therefore shouldn’t be allowed to get married legally. These viewpoints are all based on the idea that two people of the same sex cannot reproduce in a natural way. For the purpose of this rant, marriage is all about a man and a woman being able to make more human beings.

All I want to do is give that viewpoint the big middle finger and stick it where the sun don’t shine; all the while shouting a big ‘fuck you’.

As of March 31st, 2016 70,440 children in the UK alone were in some form of care setting (this meaning that they were not being looked after by one or both of their biological parents at the time of the date of the report). In other words, they were being looked after by their local authority. These statistics do not take into account young people who are 18+ or children living on the streets and have slipped through the net and are unaccounted for.

This high level of children being removed from a heterosexual household does make me want to scream from the rooftops. Just because you are capable of making a child who shares your DNA doesn’t mean you are fit to be a parent.

Every heterosexual parent who has had their child taken away from them for whatever reason obviously didn’t deserve the right to raise that child. If parents are in a heterosexual relationship but are shit parents because they abuse or neglect their child, then they are abominable people who should be damned to hell and should have their rights to be parents and be married taken away from them. Every case that I have heard of where children were being abused or neglected was in a heterosexual household and not the other way around.

Another reason why I want to scream and blindly run my mouth to any small minded, stereotypical, religious nut is that we who are part of the LGBT community will apparently corrupt the nation’s children and bring up kids who are only gay lesbian or bi. However, have you ever noticed that it is at least 90% of heterosexual households that raise children and adults of the LGBT community? So that idea is just a fucked up attempt at pulling at straws.

Then people who make these comments have the audacity to say they are not homophobic. Well sorry mate but you can tell yourself that as much as you want if that’s what helps you sleep at night, but you are rather passive aggressive in your homophobic nature. You’re trying to hide behind your ‘logical religious’ arguments, but that doesn’t and won’t wash with all of us mate. There is being logical, and then there is being logical to the point that you are just ridiculous.

The fact that people feel the need to keep bringing up these issues shows their total inability to change and their deepsteated bull-in-a-china-shop homophobic colours. We have moved forward in a positive manner here in the UK, and there is no reason to start regressing just because the rights of all doesn’t fit the religious viewpoints of a few.

No one can judge the moral compass or parenting skills of an individual based upon their sexuality or disability. To even think that people, who identify as LGBT or have a disability wouldn’t be able to raise a well rounded, healthy, happy, educated, socially comfortable, child who has economic stability are beyond me.

The welfare of the child is paramount, I can wholeheartedly agree with and back that statement and ideal. But to go as far as to say that certain people cannot achieve that based on their disability or sexuality is just so stupidly absurd that I’m lost for words with anger. As long as the child is in a happy, loving, comfortable home where all their needs are met, I don’t care who the parents are. Whether it be a heterosexual, homosexual or single parent household, the child’s welfare is of uttermost importance.

So there you have it. My little rant about pigs who believe that the traditional beliefs of the church should be upheld and how they rub me right up the wrong way because of their close minded stupid little shit storms of pathological attention seeking habits.

I want to say that I am sorry if I have offended anyone with what I have expressed in this post. These are my personal views and reactions to a certain select few and not the general population of those who are religious or spiritual. I believe that for the most part, people who are religious or spiritual can be and are very accepting, but there are those who take their religious views way to far just to bash on other people.

Until next time my lovlies I hope you have a good week. :).

Stereotypical/frustrating things I’ve heard as an individual with a Visual impairment

Hi everyone I hope you’ve had a good week and weekend so far. I’m thinking from now on I’ll probably just post every Sunday rather than Friday. At least that way I’ll have a bit more energy and motivation to write. I just want to apologise for not uploading sooner. I did have a bit of writer’s block/lack of inspiration before this lovely little idea popped into my head after reading some other blogs about the subject. This week I will be giving some examples of just a few of the things that piss me off the most when people find out that I’m visually impaired.

1. Won’t glasses help?
No, do you think that I wouldn’t be wearing glasses every day if they had a significant impact on my vision? My vision is due to the undergrowth of my retina’s. Thus not enough light is let into my visual cortex. Unfortunately, glasses can’t magically make the retina’s bigger.

2. But you don’t look blind?
No? Really? I never really thought I seemed blind either thank you very much. The mere fact that I managed to put my clothes on the right way round with a set of matching socks is beyond me. Dude, just because I have a visual impairment doesn’t mean I have to start rocking back and forth, walk like a zombie, wave my hands like a manic duck and try and take my eyes out by sticking my fingers in them.

3. I’ll pray for you.
Wait, hold up. I’m not religious or even slightly spiritual so you praying to your version of God is lost on me. Anyway, why would God decide to take away my apparent ‘suffering’ when he has bigger fish to fry like trying to cure cancer or righting the wrongs of child molesters? Your view of suffering is entirely messed up if you think I need your prayers to be healed.

4. How many fingers am I holding up?
Man, this is one of the oldest questions in the book. If I’m standing close enough, I can perfectly well tell you how many fingers I’m holding up and give you one or two well-chosen fingers of my own, thanks.

5. Are things blurry?
Again, another old question. No simple enough. My vision is not blurry it’s just not as sharp and defined as yours.

6. Do you want to feel my face?
Ew, piss off you weirdo. That’s one fetish better left to you and the misses in the bedroom thanks very much.

7. Do you know sign language?
Really? If you have asked a blind/visually impaired person this, then you are rather stupid. Seeing as sign language is a visual set of hand movements it really rather goes against the whole concept that anyone with a VI would be able to use it. Sign Language is for those who are hard of hearing/deaf and rely on their eyesight over their hearing.

8. You’re such an inspiration.
Great thanks, but you have very little insight into what is inspirational then. Malala Yousafzai, Mahat Magandi, Martin Luther King, they are examples of inspirational individuals because they have helped change the world in a positive way. All I’m doing is living my life and coping with any of the unique challenges it throws at me. You’ll have your challenges that I wouldn’t be able to deal with, so I’m by no means inspirational.

9. So can you/do you work?
Yes, I’m not completely incapable of earning my money thank you very much. I know it’s such a shocker that they let me out of my cage even long enough to do anything useful with my life. Oh and by the way? NO I DON’T WORK WITH COMPUTERS. I work in a school as an MSA and TA would you believe it or not?

10. Can you/do you live independently?
Well, I went to uni for three years, and I still have all my body parts, didn’t burn the house down, just about managed to feed and clothe myself, managed to pay bills and attend lectures and even make a few friends I would say that was a success, don’t you? Just because the government has buggered all us young people up by rising the housing marking prices so no-one could reasonably afford to live on their own for two seconds without going bankrupt and dying, doesn’t mean I couldn’t.

So yes those are just 10 things that can be quite common to hear and are frustrating as hell, hense my rather ranty and sarcastic way of writting. However I hope you enjoyed this post and managed to learn something whilst having a little giggle along the way.

Until next week my lovlies, have a good week :).

What would I say to a class of kids with Visual impairments?

Hi everyone I hope you’ve had a good weekend despite the rain that has decided to descend upon us here in England.

Today’s post will be ever so slightly different, regarding style. I’m going to be writing a post as if I were writing a speech to be given to young people who are visually impaired or who have any form of disability. I would want to empower people without sounding too condescending.

This idea comes off the back of my sixth form days that I spent at a specialist school for people with visual impairments. Every so often we would have people come in to talk about what they were doing in terms of their work. In my memory the majority of people who came in to speak to us worked in office work or in IT.

I’m a firm believer that if an individual knows their own abilities and limitations and fully utalizes all possible help they can achieve great things and don’t have to fall the steryotyplical jobs or unemployment. So without further ado lets go.

Hello everyone my name is Ellie I’m 26 years old and I work in an SEN school for children aged 3 – 19 with moderated to profound and multiple learning disabilities.

When I was younger I didn’t have a distinct idea of what I wanted to do or be when I grew up. I always fancied myself as a famous personality however, I think a lot of little girls of about 10 or 11 are drawn to the luxurious, glitz and glamour that fame can bring. The fantasy of being remembered and known by everyone, not feeling like an invisible face in the crowed is also an exciting part of that world.

As I grew older my mentality started to change. I thought about being a nurse at one point in my life. Nevertheless, I went to uni, studied contemporary performance, applied myself and came out with a good solid 2.1.

During my time at uni I volunteered at a theatre company for adults with learning disabilities. Through that contact I sarted doing part time support work for two of the young ladies who attended the theatre company.

Up until that point in my life I had no real idea of where my life was headed, what I wanted to do after uni or how to go about finding interesting work. It was this one oppitunity that gave me that all inportant light bulb moment.

For the first time in my life I had an idea as to what sort of work I would be interested in doing. I wanted to work with people. More specifically I wanted to work with people with a disability. I found the work interesting, diverse, challenging and never boring. I’m not someone who could have a 9 -5 office job. It wouldn’t take that long before you would find a shrivled, drivaling puddle version of me loytering in the corner somewhere. But that’s just me. We are all differnt and find different things fun and attractive.

Once I had finished my degree I was once again at a bit of a loss of what to do and where to head. My degree subject had not given me any knowledge or training in the type of work that I thought I could possibly persue. So what the hell was I going to do next?

In the September of 2014 I started a degree in Learning disability nursing. This, I thought would set me out for a good, long and prosperous career. Due to my lack of proper support. lack of understanding from the university, naievaty and lack of technology to help aid me I was not allowed to continue the course.

This was a devistating turn of events and one that I hadn’t really factored into my thinking. During my time at school and my time doing my first degree I had become accustomed to having my needs met, having help and not really having to think to much about the impact of my sight.

This experiance, therefore, taught me a great deal. Understand how you’re sight impacts your learning and work style, accept that you do need help and don’t be afraid to ask for it. Utalize every possible aid that you have access to, to help you improve your chances. Be prepared for set backs and lack of understanding and pre concieved judgments concerning your ability to perform certain tasks.

Unfortunatly we still live in a world where employers and educators in mainstream settings don’t have the right knowledge, stratagies and techniques to help you. You have to be the one to prove what you are capable of. Don’t shy away from what you want and need. Accept, embrace and utalize every possible stratagy to help break down the barriers that you may face.

Even if you don’t know what you want to do now accept that there will be oppitunities that arise in your future that you can’t imagine arising at this point in your life. When they do arise don’t shy away from them. Grab hold of them and figure out how to persue what you want to do. No one can tell you what you can and can’t do until you’ve tried it. Only after all stratagies have been exhausted can you truely know if someting is working for you or not.

We all have to accept that there will be certain things that we may never be able to do, driving for instance, being an airline pilot, it is rather unlickly that we will ever be able to fight for queen and country. However, you are a human being full of possibilities. You are worth every once of what you give the world.

You may have an excellent eye for maths or the sciences, something I would give an arm and a leg to be good at. You may be able to chanel the likes of Dickens or Shakespere. You may be the next Beyonce, Michael Jackson or Bill Gates. You may feel strongly about activism and change the world. Who knows, the possibilities are endless.

Knowing or discovering who you are, your passions and you’re ideal work enviroment is the most important factor for your future. Don’t settle for second best just because someone else says so. Don’t caunt yourself out just because you have a visual impairment. You deserve the right to equal access to the work that you want and need to do.

You are the person who dictates your future. In the course of your life you will come across bumps and junctions in the road. You may feel lost and unsure of how to find your way again and you know what? That’s normal. In fact I would go as far to say it would be rather strange if you didn’t face any hiccups in life.

The way we deal with those situations, how we decide to move forward, the help and advice we seek and the ability to reflect and create action plans to move forward are what make you a rounded person. Knowing what works for you in different situations will help you to present the best version of you possible.

As I stated earlier I work in a school. Some of you may be thinking how are you able to do that? Well I have developed a couple of techniques that are so stupidly simple that it’s almost rediculous. For example when I’m supporting the children on the playground I walk around more often to be able to see where specific children are. This is because my long distance is atroushous so I combat that easily enough.

Some children may like tipping chairs over or pulling hair. Due to the fact that I know these sorts of behaviour are likly to present themselves in oppotune moments I have learnt that it’s always best practice to be constantly vidual. However, this is due, in part because I know the student’s and how to help manage behaviour rather than any techniques I implement due to my visual impairment.

I love my job. Working with kids is what I want to do and I fully intend to make a career out of it. I myself want to go back to uni to study Occupational Therapy and hopefully specialize in pediatric work. From my own past expriences I have come to realize that I have to take the leading step in how I work and learn best. I have to work with others to come to the best possible solution to help me achieve the best possible outcome and move forward.

Basically what I am trying to say is that it’s important to know what you are required to do in your job or education setting, become familiar with the type of activities that you will be facing and carrying out on a daily basis and create your own techniques for coping and ask your employer or educator for appropriate accomadations as they are legally required to do so.

Don’t let society or yourself hold you back. You are not your visual impairment. You are an individual who wants their needs to be met and succeed in life. You just happen to have different challenges that you have to face so be the best version of you possible by going and getting what you deserve.
I hope you enjoyed this post. I decided to write this one because I don’t believe that young people with a disability are given enough empowerment from a young age. By accepting ourselves and the help and techniques that we can and should be using, we are able to make a positive contribution to society. We should never be made to feel like we are different and unable to access learning or work based on disability.

Some of this initative falls into our own hands. We cannot expect to be handed the world on a silver platter, nor can we become annoyed or frustrated if we simply and easily fall into steryotypes. Society won’t change if we don’t make a change ourselves. We have to work with others to teach and learn about how each individual works best. We have to prove that we are capable of achieveing the things we strive for and that we don’t want or have to conform to societies views on disability. We are individual people who deserve to be treated as just that, individual humans with rights.

Until next week my lovlies I hope you have a fabulous weekend (especially seeing as it’s a bank holiday, hurrah for an extra day to have a lie in). Lets hope the rain abaits a bit for the next three days. See you next Friday :).