View Full Version : People With 'Invisible Disabilities' Fight For Understanding

03-13-15, 04:49 PM
MARCH 08, 2015

Some disabilities are more obvious than others. Many are immediately apparent, especially if someone relies on a wheelchair or cane. But others — known as "invisible" disabilities — are not. People who live with them face particular challenges in the workplace and in their communities.

Carly Medosch, 33, seems like any other young professional in the Washington, D.C. area — busy, with a light laugh and a quick smile. She doesn't look sick. But she has suffered from Crohn's disease, an inflammatory bowel condition, since she was 13. There have been times, she says, when she's "been laying on the floor in the bathroom, kind of thinking, 'Am I going to die? Should I jump out in front of traffic so that I can die?' Because you're just in so much pain."

More recently, she was diagnosed with fibromyalgia, a condition that leaves her in a state of full-body chronic pain and intense fatigue.

Keep reading: http://www.npr.org/2015/03/08/391517412/people-with-invisible-disabilities-fight-for-understanding?utm_source=facebook.com&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=npr&utm_term=nprnews&utm_content=20150308

Mr. Wizard
03-14-15, 08:38 PM
Thanks Islander for posting this. I am guilty of wondering about "healthy looking" people parking in the handicapped parking spaces. The old adage: "Never judge the book by its cover" came to mind as I was reading this. Employees can "self disclose" invisible illnesses to their workplace Personnel Office. Once these "invisible illnesses" are disclosed and medically documented, employers are required by the American With Disabilities Act (ADA) to make special accommodations for these employees. I once supervised an employee who suffered from a condition that prevented her from working under bright lights. She was given an office where she could dim the lights. You would not believe the number of people who complained about going into her "dark" office. Fortunately, most of her colleagues became very sympathetic and understanding after learning of her disability. However, there were a few who taught me that "professionals" are not always professional.