Can you promise me that you will stop yourself from judging and confronting a person who is parked in a handicap spot with an official handicap placard, because they do NOT look handicapped? Please?
Yes, there are some people who may be taking advantage of the ‘system’ and they should be reprimanded. But, don’t take on that role. You are not the handicap police. Step away from the situation because the majority of the time that person IS legitimately authorized to have that placard.
You just don’t know. You have no idea what the situation is. You have no idea what lays underneath that healthy looking façade. They look fine to you, but maybe they are not. Pain is invisible. You just don’t know. Don’t assume they are faking it. Let it be. Let them be.
I have been stared down, laughed at, chased, verbally assaulted and judged too many times. More often than I care to remember. I have a handicap placard yet, I look fine. I dress nicely. I wear bright lipstick. My hair is neat. I don’t use a cane – at the moment and I am not limping – today. So, I MUST be faking it, right? I just want that parking spot right in the front.
What the idiot staring me down last night and ready to pounce and yell at me didn’t see, is the pain I am in. That my cervical stenosis is causing pain radiating from my head to my lower spine. That my feet are deformed and it hurts to walk. That my wrists are swollen. That I am desperately fighting the debilitating fatigue in order to go out and live. He assumed I was faking it. He checked the placard. He gave me nasty looks. He judged. Without knowing a thing about me. Nothing.
So please promise me my friends, that you will stop and think. That you will not rush to your own unfounded conclusions that this person parking in a handicap spot is abusing the system. Don’t try to be a hero and save the world by “getting” them. Although your vigilance is appreciated, 99% of the time, your assumptions will be wrong.
You just don’t know.