Pain is a part of my culture - it shapes who I am - yet this is never acknowledged.

Sometimes I get the impression that people in the Disability Movement think that acknowledging it, owning it, encourages the medical model, not structural, environmental, social model of disability. Perhaps - if we let it. Why does ignoring it prevent this?

We need to reclaim all aspects of our experience, giving new definitions, new standards, new explanations, new status.
For too long everyone, not only the medical world, has taken the lead, owning our pain, our experience - they then decipher it, define it. At least between ourselves we should begin to acknowledge these factors of our lives - without this, the inequality continues, difference is not celebrated.

Could it be that some of those who decide what constitutes the issues around disability, haven't/don't particularly experience pain as a shaping factor in their lives but follow the dominating, non-disabled conventional culture> Or perhaps they are ashamed of pains' conventional history - we're told how to view pain and when people talk of it they're accused of 'moaning' and competitive factors are used to divide us. Have we internalised the negative message of this?


 

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