Being Disabled In School [CC]
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Being Disabled In School [CC]


Massive disclaimer: I’m probably going to cry in this video. One of the first videos that I made last year – it was a non-film review one (by the way – “review” – the sign for that is crazy) – was a video about what it’s like to be openly gay in school and I said at the time that I’d never been bullied about it, it wasn’t… it wasn’t really a very big deal to me but that is because I was dealing with a much larger problem in my life and that was making my life probably like five thousand times harder. I was always the kind who was either snivelling from some rotten cold or I’d injured myself really badly for no apparent reason. So, it reached the point where, “What’s wrong now?” was probably the thing that adults said to me the most. None of them hid the fact that they thought I was this massive hypochondriac and probably quite liked just sitting there being ill because no one listens to children. Their voices are minimized because it’s just assumed that they could not possibly know what they’re talking about even when it comes to their own bodies – the one thing that they most definitely have more experience of. I knew that my body wasn’t…right? (Sounds like an odd thing to say.) (“I knew it wasn’t right. I knew it was wrong.”) I knew that I injured too easily, and that things were just much, much harder for me to do than it seemed like other people. Of course, adults thought that I was just some lazy little weakling and they told me that. No one took my complaints seriously. They just assumed that this is what I wanted to be: ill, or just sitting down doing nothing useless. To the point where I fell over in school one day and I broke my collar bone, and gave myself major concussion and was left to sit in the corridor for quite a few hours, and then sent back to class And they all rolled their eyes and were like, “Oh, you’re fine.” “Jesus.” I can’t lie, I was pretty pleased when I returned a few weeks later with a MASSIVE sling and everyone had like a shamed face. Now, don’t worry too much. My childhood was not entirely doom and gloom. Then, much as now, I am very good at making myself incredibly happy I’m just really easily pleased. Life. I colour-coordinated my pens two days ago and I’m pretty sure the high is gonna last me the rest of the week Generally, though, it felt like I spent my life (pre-seventeen) being told that I was dreamy and useless and a weakling. “Dreamy” because I was going deaf which I had not realised. Although to be fair, on balance, I am a huge daydreamer, so I think we’ll let them have that one. “Useless,” however… that one cuts to the core. Don’t ever call me useless, God damn it. Doesn’t matter how rude you are to me – “useless” will always be the thing that hurts the most. Now I’ve told the internet my kryptonite. I spent the years before I was seventeen going kind of downhill as the pain got worse and worse. Claiming that I had “lost my bus money” so that my mother would have to come and pick me up and drive me home because I just couldn’t face the pain of walking down the hill carrying my bag with all my textbooks, and then sitting on a bus and not crying. I spent a lot of my time just trying not to cry as this immense pain – it felt like someone had an iron poker and they were just jamming it into my back and forcing my bones apart in like the most hideous way. I look back now and I have absolutely no idea how I managed to survive without painkillers, because that’s madness. If you have a scoliosis and a muscle disorder, and everything hurts for Christ’s sake, just go to the doctor and ask for some painkillers. There’s no point in being stupidly brave. So bits of me would just kind of stop and then start working and then dislocate and then cramp really painfully and then they would just hurt, so much that I wanted to chop them off. Did actually think once about chopping off my fingers because they hurt so much. The world was just getting quieter and quieter, and my energy was decreasing. It felt like I was being sucked back from the world, into this little isolated ball of pain. “You want me to take a test right now? Oh, and it’s one of the most important tests of my life?” “And it’s going to define my future and my choices, and everything I do for the next few years and maybe the entire rest of my life?” “And you want me to do it right now, when I’m–oh…OK!” So, I had to take the test being seventeen. I had to take my AS Levels. “And if you fail at those, you fail at life.” Actually said one teacher to me. So, I went into my AS Level Maths exam which was actually really difficult to study for because I couldn’t hold the book because my fingers are really weak, and I was like… So, I sat down, I picked up my pencil, started writing… but then, twenty minutes later, I couldn’t feel my arm and then an hour later, I couldn’t lift my arm and then twenty-four hours later, “I can’t move my fingers, or my arm, oh dear.” “It’s all floppy.” And then a week later I was rushed to hospital with my beautiful paralysed arm. Oh, and then the other one paralysed and then I had a lumbar punction that went wrong so I lost all my spinal fluid. And then I couldn’t sit up for a year and a half, and I had to lie in the dark, and I couldn’t have any sound, or light, or be touched because those things were all incredibly painful. Basically, everything hurt so they medicated me a lot. So it’s a good thing that I’m a daydreamer, huh? Yeah, it is. I spent a lot of that time creating some amazing visual worlds in my little mind and just living there. So, at seventeen, they finally diagnosed me and I was “officially” disabled and I really wasn’t going to get much better, apparently. Although, hey! Look at me now. Loot at me now So if I thought that I knew how hard it was to be physically challenged at school before… boy, was I wrong. So, there were two main problems. Number one: The physical practicalities of being in a wheelchair and unable to move your arms and number two, which is actually far more difficult: sort of the social problem. So, when I started at my sixth form, they were just building the sixth form school We were in portacabins a lot of our classes and that wasn’t great. The builders left everything in a mess, and we were constantly having to step over stuff – which, really, health and safety, guys! Why was it not happening? Many of our classes were in the main school building which we had to walk up a hill to get to. If you’ve ever tried to roll yourself up a hill – a super steep hill, like… It was Bristol. If you know Bristol, you know hills. I think there were actually only three classrooms on the ground floor. All of the other classrooms, there were lots of stairs. You had to either go up or you had to go down and there’s no lift – it’s a very old building. Oh, and the Art building – that was also impossible to get into it because there were steps up into that. That wasn’t the hardest part of attempting to finish my Art AS Level, though. The hardest part was clearly that I could not move my arms. And yet I know – I know that people do paint with a paintbrush in their mouth but I think that’s a skill you have to learn and you can’t do it whilst in hospital when you have two weeks left to go. Schools in Britain are legally required to provide access for their disabled students. So, the new building that was just completed as I was getting ill, had a lift. Schools are not legally required to turn on the lift …oh. I’m not even kidding. No one turned on the lift. Instead, for any class that couldn’t be re-arranged to be in one of those downstairs classrooms I had to be carried up the stairs and teachers aren’t allowed to touch you, or lift you, or do anything that could harm them and I completely understand that. Obviously, I don’t want someone to be hurting themselves. However! However, people in my class would have to volunteer to help lift me and if they weren’t strong enough, or there just weren’t enough people who wanted to volunteer, then I didn’t go to class. But I only had the energy really for one class a day, so I had to be driven in for that one class, and if I couldn’t get into the room…that was it. Just get driven home again. Oh, I also couldn’t go to the common room, because that was in a portacabin and I couldn’t get into a portacabin because the wheelchair didn’t fit through the doors. It really hurt my fingers, actually. Getting jammed in that door. Anyway. And then they moved the common room to the new building. It doesn’t really matter, the number of stairs, when you’re in a wheelchair – it’s just there are stairs. Actually it does… It was someone’s really bright idea to build on a hill. So I probably spent about 85% of my time unconscious 10% being taken into school by my mother, who then had to come and collect me twenty minutes later because I’d probably just passed out. I really wasn’t kidding about the inability to sit up thing. I could not sit up. And then the other 5% was probably daydreaming, or stuck in a toilet actually, because that happened a lot. So, a really valiant effort was made by everyone to continue my education except for the local school board who were massive pains in the arse; refused funding for months, and only gave me the equipment I needed mere weeks before I then had to graduate. (Thanks.) Name and shame, Bristol City Council. Name and shame. So that was the physical aspect of being disabled in secondary school but who genuinely aspects anything bureaucratic to be easy? It wasn’t. That would be ridiculous, so… Hey, this is England. Welcome to the land of red tape. It was frustrating, but it’s pretty much to be expected. Much worse was the social aspect. Now I’m probably going to cry. Probably the best way to describe it would be “three strikes and you’re out.” So, you turned down three invitations to social events and you were just like dropped basically, from the group. Even if your excuse was being in hospital, which is a really good excuse for missing someone’s birthday party. Actually, no. OK, no. I’m going to start with the really good stuff – with the amazing people who really helped me because that’s what they deserve. You know what? You know who you are. You were there for me. You came to visit me at home, or in hospital, or and you just hugged me, and I cried, and you let me and you let me know I wasn’t alone, and – aww, or you found me in the common room sitting in a corner, in my wheelchair, crying my eyes out because my old friends wouldn’t even acknowledge my presence and you very silently put your hand on my shoulder and just let me know that you were there. And that meant the world to me. So, to that little group of people – most of whom were actually just vague acquaintances before I became ill and were then amazing, and helped so much – you are wonderful, kind people and I thank you from the very bottom of my little heart. Especially Mary, smuggling custard tarts into hospital – that was awesome. And every other amazing thing that she did, actually. Oh dear. See? I’m at the good stuff and I’m already crying. It’s going well. It’s pretty common for disabled people – especially those who are kind of outwardly disabled in a very obvious way – to talk about being invisible to the wider world and…it’s really painfully true. It was as if I had suddenly been draped in this invisibility cloak I realise now that they were just awkward and didn’t know how to talk to me any more and how to handle the situation. And I was so distressed – so, that’s not much fun. You know, I needed my friends. And they just dropped me. Although, actually, that is too much–that’s too passive a term, really, isn’t it? One friend every time I got wheeled up next to him to a group that he was standing in, he would just walk away. Not say anything to those other people. He would just walk away. I would roll up to the same table in the library and he would just go. I think it was probably quite a sort of harsh atmosphere. You know, teenagers aren’t necessarily great at dealing with real drama and difficulties but, my God. That school was particularly bad. You know, if you are the odd one out, you are gonna get picked on. A girl in my year got glandular cancer. The running joke for weeks was how much she looked like a chipmunk. That’s–those were the–yeah. As I said: not the nicest school. So, I was sitting in class one day I’m sort of ignoring – totally ignoring – all of the sniggers happening around me and then ten minutes later, I turn around, and I realise that the backs of my paralysed arms are all blue and black and red and sore because the others had been pinching them to check whether or not I was lying about them being paralysed. And that was the standard : attempting to catch me out. Stabbing my thigh with a protractor to see if I jumped. Which I did, because my legs were not paralysed(!) as I had said. Not everyone in a wheelchair is paralysed. Don’t worry. Do not worry. There is a happy ending. It took me two years longer than everyone else but I finally finished my A-Levels and I had to take my exams lying down in the dark, with my eyes closed. Dictating to someone else who wrote everything down. The light was so painful; I could barely stay awake but I did it. I did it. And I finished with a good handful of A’s and B’s. And I went to university, which ended up taking five years, rather than the standard three. But you know what? I bloody did it! Bloody did it. What is the moral of this story? Number one: Listen to your children. If they are telling you that something is wrong with their body, they are probably right. Number two: Don’t ever call someone useless, because it will come back to bite you when they one day do something absolutely amazing. Fight forever. Fight for–fight for what you deserve. You are entitled to help, and you should take it and never, never feel ashamed or be ashamed–allow yourself to be shamed by the people around you. Whatever help you need to do whatever it is you want to do, take it. It doesn’t make you weak to need a little bit of extra help. And don’t worry about feeling like a burden, because you are bringing something to people; you just can’t tell. And most importantly… Most importantly: you are not alone. You are absolutely never alone because I’ve been through this and I’ve done it, and it sucked and it was really hard but you can do it. I did it. And even if life becomes suddenly something that’s very different to what you thought it would be it can still be amazing, I promise. Oh, OK. I should probably stop now, before I just turn into a panda. Where’s my dog? I need to cuddle a dog. Oh, there you are. Come here. Hello. See? Puppies exist so the world is a beautiful place. Aye-aye-aye.

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100 thoughts on “Being Disabled In School [CC]

  1. jessie i'm confused about one thing? you said that your religion treats everyone the same so being a child you were never made as any less yet here you said that you weren't listened to because you were a child.

  2. I wasn’t going to say anything until the part about the pinching your arms and stabbing you. I’m disabled, but I’m fortunate enough to not be visibly. I’ve gotten a few comments from the few people I mistakenly decided to tell, but nothing as bad as that. You are such an inspiration to me. You’re such a strong woman and your videos help me so much, even though our disabilities are very different. What you’re doing is so important to the world. Thank you so much for being shamelessly, openly you. I only hope to be like you someday.

  3. "And don't worry about feeling like a burden, because you are bringing something to people; you just can't tell"
    I'm probably just in a dramatic mood today but this really hit me. I feel like most of us (people with disabilities I mean) have felt that at some point, and, honestly, sometimes I still catch myself stuggling with it, so hearing this was really… validating I guess? I don't even know if that's a word. Anyway I'm sorry about all this rambling, I just wanted to thank you for saying that. I think I sort of needed to hear it… and I doubt I'm the only one.

  4. I am so fucking proud of you for finishing your exams and university. It's hard living with chronic illnesses. I have diabetes, hypothyroidism, PCOS and Autism, along with depression and anxiety. The teasing in elementary and middle school I endured because of my autism and social anxiety was beyond horrible. Nowadays (i'm almost 20 got my GED last year) I often find me comparing myself to others I consider "normal" and even my younger brother who's accomplishing things that it's taking me a lot longer to accomplish due to the way my brain works. I severely lack motivation and I often feel the obstacles to becoming a useful, productive member of society are impossible to get past. I recently had to quit my first ever job due to stress and anxiety and comparing myself to others is an almost daily occurrence, even though I know I shouldn't. Jessica, I recently started watching your videos and I have to say, you are one of the biggest inspirations of my life. I greatly admire you for still being here and overcoming your struggles, despite how they must have felt at the time, because i can only imagine how hard all that was for you. Thank you for sharing your stories here on youtube, and making some people feel a little less alone. you are truly a blessing in my life right now, even though we've never met

  5. Thank you for sharing this amazing story, I have no words to describe how much this touched me. You are so beautiful and brave and I idolise you for that. Thank you. 💕❤️🥰

  6. Why have an elevator and not turn it on. Is it really that cost effective to leave it off? Good freaking lord. Time to break into the elevator control room and flip the stupid switch, then put a lockout tagout on it so nobody else can turn it off. Muahaha.

  7. How do you handle pain? As someone with a disability (that im almost %100 they misdiagnosed), and the inability to take pain meds due to being a recovered addict, i really struggle with dealing with just day to day agony. Also, do you ever have issues with people close to you feeling like you have it easier or like they wish they could be you as a "break"? Its so odd how able bodied or more abled people just do that?

  8. I remember that the only fried I had in my class suddenly ignored me and started treating me badly just bc she was scares that the class and her friends would consider her a weirdo bc she was staying with me,the weirdo,and thats how my amazing bullying and physical abuse kinda started from my lovely colleagues. I still have a trauma after that and my new colleagues just tell me to forget it bc its in the past but thats not gonna happen loool

  9. Yes, as you said it, they were unable to handle it as teenagers, so the only thing they felt they could do was walking away or doing really dumb and mean things. I see the responsibility was on the side of the adults around: the teachers, also the parents. They should have shown them and be the right role models here and they missed that point somehow. Well, today YOU are the role model – great, lovely, cheerful and so beautiful !!! I love your channel. Your relationship with Claudia as a proof of true and sweet love between two wonderful and strong women makes me happy! <3 <3 <3

  10. Is she signing? Like as she’s speaking? I mean she didn’t make hand gestures for parts of what she was saying but the gestures look like sign language

  11. offers hugs People are dicks, and I'm so sorry you had to go through that.

    I'm not paralyzed, but I have an undiagnosed pain/weakness issue, and I know the struggle of being treated poorly because of it. I was never explicitly called useless or worthless, but my biodad would yell at me for "being lazy" when I couldn't do something physically demanding and my ex would berate me for being a burden on him and not doing enough around the house.

    I still sometimes crawl across the house because I feel guilty about asking my girlfriend to help me get to the bathroom, or take naps on the kitchen floor because I fell down while getting a snack and don't want to bother anyone about it. I have a walker and a wheelchair, but I avoid using them because I feel like, if I can do anything by myself, even if it's really hard or painful, then I shouldn't even consider any kind of assistance until I absolutely "need" it. I'm terrified that I'll get used to being helped and then become as lazy and complacent as I was accused of being.

    People don't realize the impact that their words and actions can have, especially when someone isn't in any condition to defend themselves or even just walk away. I'm sorry you've had so much to struggle through, but I'm glad you've found a good place and good people to help you and advocate for you. more hugs

  12. You are giving voice and advocating for multiple groups of people that are misunderstood and marginalized….honey useless is the dead LAST adjective that you embody!

  13. I was not expecting to cry today! I’m so happy you made it through all that and reached the place you are now ❤️

  14. Jessica … you a wonderful beautiful human being. I went through something similar that you went through and I understand completely

  15. ❤🧡💛💚💙💜❤

    Also, I love the last line you said: "See? Puppies exist. So the world is a beautiful place."

    Even after all the crap and absolute bullshit you've gone through and have been put through, you've still found the world beautiful because "puppies exist."

    💖💖💖💖💖💖💖

  16. Oh my God…at first I felt irritated whey you said that adults ignore children's voices and feelings…I felt like it was not a fair generalisation…
    but then I recalled that I've had anxiety neurosis and social phobia for 13 years already (being 25), that was a cause of a lot of my chronic problems…headaches, heart pounding, eyesight loss, hearing problems, lack of energy. Constant body tension experienced for so many years caused patella joint dysplasia, vulvodynia, feet ache so serious I couldn't walk. I don't even mention my mental health, heh. And yet no one cared, no one even seemed to notice. My mom (a doctor) thought I was a hypochondriac
    . Well.
    But I (almost) bloody well did it! Alone, only with a help from my wonderful fiancee. And thank you so much Jessica for speaking about your experience. Mine was not that harsh, but it's not a contest, isn't it? And your story helped me see mine in a different way. Thank you so so much! And keep on being so wonderful! <3

  17. Thank you so much Jess. I had the same social struggles and am struggling through Uni right now. This helps me so much every time I feel alone. Thank you. ❤️

  18. Oh the thing you have with useless I have with lazy. I was told in lazy every single day. Turns out I have autism and a 1500 people school wasn't a good environment for me…

  19. God this made me bawl. You're one of the most positive people I've ever seen, very inspiring how you use your channel to bolster others and raise awareness. I always feel cheered up after watching one of your videos, even if I'm also sniveling.

  20. Im sat here crying at this. I was really badly bullied between the ages of six and sixteen, and in all honesty it caused a lot of my mental illnesses. Im so sorry this happened to you.

  21. school.is.so.difficult. I had to miss so so so much PE this year and my pe teacher once came up to me and said '' for gods sake just join with the lesson'' and I panicked and started crying and just said "no. I can't my physiotherapist and GP won't even let me use stairs so no cant play football" which is incredibly bold for me, I've been ill since I was young so I was kinda just known as the attention seeking quiet one, and she just rolled her eyes and walked away and I cried for sO long. I also have a disorder that means I get injured (sprains usually) and I hate the '' what have you done now'' its frustrating. now its the summer holidays and I'm getting worse and I start GCSEs this year, I'm scared. if any of you want to talk to somebody else who's had similar experiences dm @//firingfingerguns on Instagram

  22. Im disabled and want to make too many things alone … Sometimes I should seek for more help …
    It's really bad to tell someone he/she is useless. You showed them they are wrong!

  23. Omg she's crying her eyes out while giving like an inspirational speech this lady is absolutely brilliant and wonderful like HOW COULD YOU NOT LIKE HER?

  24. I can’t tell you how much I heard “what’s wrong *now*” I thought everyone bumped into something and felt that initial “bump into” pain for the next 10 minutes. I thought everyone had to rest after a shower, or had pain all the time. Or their elbows cracked and we’re sore so much. I ended up always “cracking” my elbows because they always hurt. I was trying to hyperextend them to the point where pain was gone. Obviously didn’t work. I thought other 7 year olds had back pain or woke up crying from back pain. Or having intestinal cramping all the time. Or were able to pop their bones out and in. Or were able to stretch everything BEYOND normal. And then came to the point where my TMJ pains as so bad I couldn’t eat anymore. I lost weight because of it. My teeth are straight but not in the right place. And then I sprained my ankle 3 times. And then dislocated my knee. Then dislocated my knee a year later. And I’ve just been going down hill since. But your videos are what made me realize that my pain and symptoms and issues weren’t normal. And made me seek help.

  25. Jess, I say thank you for putting so much of your heart out for everyone to know. it shows great character and growth, I would love to meet you in real life one day and chat. as a person who also struggles in school its so wonderful to see im not alone. its amazing to see another ginger who is a non-conformist. I love you, my cousin is also deaf and loves you. thank you so very much❤❤❤

  26. 2:29 lol same thing happened with my arm in 4th grade after i broke it roller skating. i'd always gone to the nurse for migraines and they thought it was no different. i returned the next day with a brace and they seemed smug until i told them i would be absent the next day to get a cast.

  27. When I watched this video and Jessica cried, I teared up a little. Then at the end, when she got really emotional, and then picked up the dog and said, "See, puppies exist. So the world is a beautiful place." That is the hardest I've cried in two years. I can't even explain the emotion that that made me feel.

  28. We would’ve been best friends just because you’re a ginger and deaf. You are my British twin and I love you so much!! You are the cutest human being ever!

  29. My school is realy good about it, we got the new school with lifts and special rooms with the wheelchair lifty things and big doors and hight changing tables

  30. This video is one of the reason I like the fact my mom works with sped kids. I learned to accept special needs people as different but also just the same as everybody else at the same time. I’m a lot more patient with people with extra needs then others because people who do need help just need extra help and that is just fine

  31. I got bullied for being gay and not being able to do most physical activities or even walking and talk about needing a cane (I think is pretty cool) and it's the reason I moved schools I'm starting soon and you're an inspiration to keep my head high this year and keep going, you sweet beautiful bean!

  32. Honey you are so inspiring and wonderful. The message you are giving is wonderful and I'm so glad I have found your channel. I myself have cerebral palsy and have had to fight immensely for what I have and knowing that there are people out there that I can sympathize with makes all the difference. Thank you so so much and please keep doing what you're doing.

  33. I told myself I wasn’t going to cry but as soon as you talked about them physically assuaging you and harassing you I cried and when you said but I bloody did it I started crying again and when you were crying I FRIKEN BALLED LIKE A BABY
    ❤️❤️❤️❤️ I wish I could’ve been there for you❤️❤️❤️❤️

  34. The world is a beautiful place because puppies and kitties exist, but also because people like you, and people like Claudia exist. You and your radiant shining personality and disposition help make the world beautiful. Never forget that 🖤🖤

  35. You are so strong. ❤️ I was bullied in school too but not because of any disabilities. But the school I was in gave me disabilites, it was so bad. I eventually had to drop out and was diagnosed with depression and social anxiety and my whole life changed. Now, also, we're finding out I could be autistic so that explains a lot and I know if it had been known in school, they would have picked on me for that too. I also was diagnosed with PCOS in 2016 and am now hopefully going for a laparoscopy to diagnose endometriosis. I think I've had these 2 conditions at least since the onset of puberty. My periods have always rendered me bedridden and they have always been irregular so they surprise me. It would mean taking the week off school and again, if my limitations were known back then, it would have made it worse. So I'm glad in a way, even if late diagnoses have made me suffer in other ways. I couldn't have handled any more bullying. I tried to kill myself twice over it and eventually, things just came to a head and I had to drop out. I ended up going to something called community tuition for 2 hours a day instead and I thrived there. Especially since it was a lot less to manage if I was getting my horrible periods. And there were less pupils there so far less panic attacks/meltdowns! 🙂 Bullies are cowards, that's something I've learnt since. Half the people that picked on me wouldn't have the guts to go through everything I've been through since leaving that school. They would crumble. And achieving over 5 years clean of self-harm so far has made me realise that I am braver and stronger than they will ever be. So are you, Jessica. 😊❤️

  36. You are so brave and strong and thank you so much for this.
    I really need something like this to just help me get through shit and show me that there really is light at the end of every tunnel.
    Thank you so much! You have no idea how much this means to me. 💖

  37. I have short term memory problems, long term memory is good, so I just need more repetitions to learn stuff, but so often people don't understand, especially teachers and employers. It's so frustrating how ignorant society is about disabled people. I would often get bullied in elementary school and still struggle with anxiety and have trust issues with people today.

  38. Every person takes their own time to do things. It doesn't matter if someone does something faster than someone or the "normal" pace or slower. People take their own time and that's how the world is and people should realize that more.

  39. Fuck whoever called you useless. I’m in my 20s but I could never imagine assuming a minor was faking their pain. Much less outright calling them useless.

  40. Being a teenager is not an excuse. I never did those things as a teenager. I hope your former classmates feel bad for the rest of their lives, honestly. What selfish, unintelligent brats they are.

  41. I haven't watched thru all your videos (yet), so you maybe already talked more about your daydreaming.
    I wanted to ask if you know about Maladaptive Dayreaming a term coined by Eli Somer. You starting daydreaming to cope with isolation reminded me of it.

  42. In the last few weeks I had good reason to believe I might be dying after my nervous doctor spoke to me. Your videos were a treasure in this time.

    We no longer think it is that illness.

    You are at least useful for that.

  43. After 3 years trying to get an elevator pass (I can walk up/down a couple times, but 5 times a day, goodbye hips, hello numbness my old friend). I'm in my senior year now and I have it, but it doesn't move fast enough to get me to class on time, and even aside, I constantly get asked "hey wtf r u doing on there?" By teachers. Some even question the validity of the pass, thinking it's forged.

    Oh yeah, the nurse has to hold any OTC meds (takes a damn hour to get it too…), And any prescription meds that are too "hard' or w/e aren't even allowed to be on school grounds. Even if the doctor says "hey, keep these, she might die" they're just like, sorry fam.. they also won't give me a full dose of ibuprofen and so they're basically sugar pills 🙃

    OH YEAH it's so easy for ppl to get an elevator pass for "anxiety" (no proof or diagnosis needed. Not, like, GAD, just normal human anxiety.) But they yell at you when you can't walk cause ur hips are both out of socket and thr legs are pins needles and I'm struggling with crutches aaaha, wish I woulda known I could just say "the hallway makes me anxious" before I mentioned the physical medical things

  44. This whole video I just wanted to hug you tight. I was sick through school and experienced so much of what you shared and I can relate to the emotions and pain of it. Just stay proud that you did it. Doesnt matter at all that it took longer or wasnt the traditional route. YOU DID IT! that is all that matters! ♡♡♡♡

  45. I can’t weigh in on the exact experience you had I can say I was bullied to a degree in middle and high school. Mostly for being poor and not fitting In physically (clothes, super frizzy curly hair that I didn’t know how to deal with) and even though it was more than 15 years ago I do still tear up remembering how it made me feel back then. I just had to comment about how your dog came in and made it better. My little pup got me thru the last year of a horrendously emotionally and mentally abusive relationship and even now, more than 3 years after it ended, he will still climb in my lap and lick my tears off my face if I’m crying. 💜

  46. You are beautiful inside and out and incredibly strong and also gorgeous and brave. I love your videos. Even when they make me cry. Luckily today eyeliner and mascara wasn't happening 😉 So no "panda" for me lol. xoxo

  47. I only just found this incredibly inspirational person! I’ve had a rare genetic cancer, diagnosed in 2012, and I too have had a really hard time. I can’t thank Jessica enough for being brave enough to talk about her experience and no longer feel alone

  48. I needed this, this is me, at the moment I am at a very good school but have struggled for years to get people to believe me and still struggling for what I need.
    Schools in the past have just been plain abusive. It is tough when you are different

  49. this is what would happen to me in my school if i used a wheelchair full time or told people about my disability, even some of my friends that know whats wrong with me have made fun of me. Im so sorry that happend to you

  50. This video sent me back in time. I have FELT this frustration. It sucks not being seen or heard by the people youre supposed to look up to and trust when your suffering 😔😞. I am glad that much good has come out of your situation and that in all the darkness, you've grown and changed for the better. Those experiences can poison a person, but I see that your giving it back the light and that is lovely. Your videos make me feel so safe and positive, and it is comforting to know someone has also gone through this kind of stuff. Your like "a quiet hand on the shoulder" of youtube! ☺️😄😀😇 Thank you for calling out the bullshit and reliving these experiences for us, I am sure it wasn't easy (but hopefully therapeutic?). hughughughugs to you and your stunning partner in crime, Mrs Claudia. She encourages me too. I may be straight but you two are #relationshipgoals 😉😘🥰🤗🤗🤗

  51. I am going back to watch some of your older videos and I am so proud of how far you have come. You are amazing and an inspiration. Thank you for just being you and being so honest ❤

  52. you are a wonderful human being and a beacon of light for everyone

    note you are not useless AT ALL . You are not useless at all because you have taught a lot of people about disability and illness and also the gayness , which is important .

  53. You are so brave. I only have mild dislexia and I couldn't imagine living with anything worse. I struggle with all my essays and have been told that they are not good enough and then tried so hard to get to the same standard as everyone else but I have always fallen behind. You are amazing in everything you do you inspire so many people. You make them feel less alone.

  54. this video made me cry so hard. my heart goes out to you for what you've been through and I volunteer to go find those kids and make them feel ashamed for what they did.
    you are amazing. i think i found your channel when i needed it the most. thank you.

  55. jessica, ive watched your videos for a while and this pulled tears from eyes that never cry. i am not physically disabled, i have a learning disability. i cannot relate to most of this video, but when you talk about being invisible, i felt it. i am very talkative, and people often mistake my loquaciousness for doing well in school. People tell me i am smart, which i think i am. but its very hard to tell yourself that you are smart…. WHEN SCHOOLS CALL YOU USELESS! i again can only relate to your amazing overcomings slightly, but you should know how many people you touch and how much this video helped me❤️ you are lovely

  56. You are so inspiring. Thank you for sharing your story. I am an elementary school teacher and something that I absolutely don't tolerate is bullying. I cried listening to your story, but I think you sharing your stories are inspiring people everyday! Keep up the great work you lovely person 🙂

  57. I cried a LOT here, partially becuase I was already trying not to cry before I watched it… This channel, and these videos always make me feel like maybe the world isn't such a bad place. Thank you.

  58. I was not well from childhood and everyone thought I was a hypochondriac. I got the lazy moniker as well. It's not just teenagers (re friends leaving you) … a lot of us who become chronically, debilitatingly ill to the point of disability when when older have loads of horror stories about losing most or all of our friends, partners, and even family.

  59. So i have this condition where i have bent bones in my knees and i cant alk for to long without pain and i have to take meds for it
    So one day i slpet in late and i had to take my meds at school and people started staring at me because i cant take my meds unless they are crushed up so now every body in my school thinks i do drugs

  60. Huge shoutout to the friends who came and visited you and let you cry. It’s a shame that there aren’t more people like that and that so many people couldn’t see what a wonderful person you are, Jessica. ❤️❤️❤️ I discovered you from your collaboration with DissociaDID and you were so kind and wonderful and understanding in that. You’re an amazing person and you deserve better than the people who did all those horrible things.

  61. The part where you said, "you're not alone"…. I bet you a bajillion British pounds that you just saved a few lives. And you also gave people who have made peace with their bodies (like myself) a bit more strength. Thank you.

  62. let me just start by saying that i can't believe how common discrimination is towards disabled children, and i'm sorry for everyone who has had to deal with these disgusting situations.
    context: i'm hypermobile and have been diagnosed with PoTS.

    a few times during the school year, we'd be moved to the library to listen to a youth speaker … and since we were a pretty big class, we all had to sit on the floor as there weren't enough chairs for everyone. no big deal really, but its extremely difficult for me to go from sitting to standing (i have bad knees, and ofc, i'll pass out without assistance).

    after the speaker left, i remember asking one of my "friends" to help me up and keep me balanced for only a minute, and … they did help me up, i guess; by yanking my arms so hard that i experienced what i now know was a partial dislocation .. my poor right elbow was sore, swollen, and popping for days! they then decided that keeping me steady was too much work / too time expensive, and thought that nearly breaking my arm was good enough. yeah, they left me while i was pre-syncope. i had to grab onto some random classmate. that random classmate then became one of my best friends, so i suppose SOME good came out of that ordeal.

    more kids/adults need to understand that we aren't joking, being childish and overreacting, or looking for attention when we say we're disabled, in pain, and that we need help. all i'd like is to be treated with respect and compassion, but i suppose that's too much to ask for? school was the worst, and i'm so glad i don't have to deal with it anymore.

  63. I just found this video and it's sad the things that teenagers do.
    I'm totally disabled and I think here in America 'university' would just be thought of as 'college'? Anyway I was enrolled in one class the first semester of 2018, then 2 classes second semester. The idea was for my brain (I have an ABI) to gradually work up to 4. I was taking 1 class over the summer but in July a somewhat embarrassing development that I won't go into detail about in a public comment happened. The result of which was that my brain wouldn't shut down or do any of the things it should in sleep. So I was awake. For about 3 months. Yes it was brutal. If my brain doesn't sleep then I don't retain any information, thus making studying impossible. I've since worked around health problems the best that I can but there are still days I just don't sleep and therefore can't retain information. You're the first person I've seen with cognitive issues but still lives their life. Other people can't understand me when I speak so I can't dictate to someone. I can barely move from bed and the only thing I could do is online classes. Do you have any relevant links or possible solutions? It would be great if I could return to school but I really feel like I've been defeated and never will.

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