• Roxii Hoare-Smith

Invisible Disabilities

Talking Invisible Disabilities – Support the campaign here

I post the majority of my life on social media but I rarely ever post personal blog posts but I thought it was time for a change…

So recently an Asda store put up a sign stating ‘Not every disability is visible’ which has sparked a lot of media coverage on the subject and a new campaign by Crohn’s & Colitis UK. I’ve never seen so much coverage on the topic and it is incredible seeing so much awareness about it.

I rarely ever talk about it but I was diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis in 2010. You would probably never know unless I said because it is an invisible disability.

 After constant doctors and hospital appointments I was fortunate to be discharged from hospital in 2012 after being told I was in remission. But earlier this month, just before this Asda signage went up, I was told that I had relapsed. It had been a massive struggle the past few months and I had been in denial that the reason I had been feeling really unwell was due to a relapse.

Anyway, after this news and seeing so many articles on UC and invisible disabilities over the past couple of weeks I felt really inspired to let you know how you can help.

I want urge people to join the Crohn’s & Colitis UK campaign to add better signage to disabled toilet doors in all supermarkets across the country. Click on the link below and the email is all ready to go, it takes seconds!

Support the campaign here. 

I can totally agree that a major anxiety for people living with Ulcerative Colitis (or Crohn’s disease), is being refused toilet access or being frowned upon about using the disabled facilities. I never actually use disabled facilities because I’m so afraid of this. I’d much rather put myself through a tortuous 15 minute queue for the ladies than use the disabled facilities.

I’m so happy that there is so much awareness at the moment that although someone may look fine on the outside it doesn’t mean they are.  I hope to be an example of how that not every disability is visible. I also wanted to shout out about suffering from UC  so others who may be suffering from the same or similar medication condition can realise they aren’t alone.

I can agree that it really is a tough daily battle but as Ste Walker who suffers from Crohn’s disease stated last year, ‘maybe I just want TO BE FINE or to feel normal.’

As well as wanting to look fine and feel normal I also convinced myself that I didn’t need my medication and stopped taking it. Which was a stupid idea because I let myself suffer for no reason and ended up relapsing. So if you are in a similar situation to me then don’t be like me, take your tablets or you’ll see yourself back and forth to the doctors again.

Don’t be quick to judge others as you don’t know what suffering they are hiding.

What I’m wearing…

Top – Bravado band tees c/o Radiator Communications

Bandana – WeGo in Harajuku, Tokyo

Sunglasses – ASOS

Shoes – Topshop

Photography by Karl Cowell

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