A woman in a wheelchair cleverly responds to a nosy stranger by asking her similar personal and uncomfortable questions.
Being a disabled person can be challenging as it is. But what makes life unnecessarily more difficult for individuals with disabilities, is when people begin to get too nosy about their condition. A lot of people seem to lack basic boundaries when it comes to conversation, especially with disabled people. u/purrfunctory, a woman paralyzed in the lower half of her body, shared a story of how they encountered an insensitive woman who wanted to know everything about their condition. The post has gone viral with 17.4K upvotes and 3.6K comments on the site.
The woman shared that she was attending a state fair when a woman came up to them and asked to know about her medical condition. They write, "Long story short, I’m paralyzed from roughly the bra band down. I use a power wheelchair and have a service dog." She mentions how she doesn't mind talking about paralysis with people, but this particular woman happened to be quite "rude, abrasive and demanding." The woman basically acted like she was "entitled" to know their personal medical history.
They write, "She didn’t even ask politely, just demanded to know how it happened, what the results were, if I tried X, Y, Z treatments, you name it." The stranger took it a step further when she wanted to know about the woman's romantic life, which is ideally not something you ask someone when you meet for the first time. The woman could not believe that the stranger was making such demands and was just in disbelief as their food went cold. They tried to be polite initially but decided to get back at them, seeing how insensitive they were.
So, the woman decided to ask the rude stranger about their last visit to the gynecologist. They write, "Were the stirrups too high, did she have to do that awkward shimmy/scoot down the table if the speculum was cold, if the PAP smear hurt, the usual." The woman reasoned that she was also entitled to know the stranger's medical history. The rude stranger began to lose it upon hearing this.
She began to scream and yell at the venue accusing the disabled woman of being "gross." Other people from her group tried to get her to calm down and told her that she should have just answered her questions. The woman writes, "As far as I could tell this woman wasn’t impaired in any way. She didn’t have a carer or minder, she was with a group of friends and had been carrying in normally with them until she saw me."
The disabled woman shared that she had no intention of disturbing the group and chose to sit at the end of the table. But seeing how the stranger wanted to know everything about them decided that she should "trade info for info." The strange woman was still hysterical towards the end till the group left. All of this drama cast many eyes upon the disabled woman which she didn't like.
She concluded, "At the time, I felt good for finally finding a shiny, new (but still broken) spine and standing up for myself." People in the community agreed with her response to the rude stranger and shared their thoughts in the comments section. u/newest-low said, "NTA. Chances are people were staring because a basketcase was screaming at someone in a freaking wheelchair."