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Disabilities Living with a disability, either physical or mental, can be both challenging and life changing. For support, questions and discussions relating to disabilities, post here.

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Evanesco Offline
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Do I count as disabled? - September 6th 2014, 06:07 PM

I never used to identify as disabled, it would never have occured to me that I might fit in that bracket, or that I could get any kind of help and support. My.. issues have got worse over the last few years and I've been told I should get in touch with the disability people at my university. But I feel like a faker and that I'm taking it away from people who really need support, because how on earth could I be classed as having a disability?

I have hypothyroidism, which is manageable but I have to take a hormone replacement for the rest of my life, I get chronic tension headaches, again treated with medication taken daily, IBS and (supposedly) leaky gut syndrome which makes me feel ill a lot of the time, and I seem to have fatigue almost all of the time although I don't know what's causing that, whether it's something already mentioned or something different. I also have longterm mental health problems. But I feel like, because I don't have an actual disability I shouldn't be using the service. :/


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Re: Do I count as disabled? - September 6th 2014, 07:02 PM

Hi Harrison,

If your hypothyroidism is affecting you greatly (causing the fatigue you are experiencing, the headaches etc.) than I suggest you talk to your school about what accommodations are available.
You would not be taking from anyone by using their services. They are there to help studetns that need extra help because of a disability and since you are struggling with this, it will not hurt to see what they can do for you.
You can make an appointment with their office most likely to explain to them what you are experiencing and ask them if they need any sort of documentation to prove that you have hypothyroidism (this may be a note from a physician).
I hope this helps and that you get the support you need from your school.
If you ever want to talk, you can PM me. I'm always willing to listen and support as best as possible.
Take care.


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Re: Do I count as disabled? - September 6th 2014, 07:12 PM

Hey Harrison, disability services actually accommodate more conditions than you might think. Any condition diagnosed by a qualified professional, that interferes with your ability to learn or do well in your classes may qualify you for services and that includes medical conditions, learning disabilities, and mental health diagnoses. The documentation process may vary by school, but there's paperwork to be filled out and signed by a doctor and/or mental health professional depending on the diagnosis that proves that you do in fact have it and they would provide you a list of accommodations they consider reasonable and necessary. That doesn't mean that you would have to take them if you don't want to, it would label you. I think it depends how much it's interfering with your life. If you're sick enough that you can't attend classes to the point that you're missing significant amounts of information, it may be worth looking into Not every "disability" is visible and there are several different kinds. If you need the accommodations, you are entitled to them by law. It's up to you.


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Re: Do I count as disabled? - September 6th 2014, 08:13 PM

Thanks for the advice. I am pretty severely affected, I barely made it through last year, needing extensions, missing lectures, falling asleep in the ones I did make it to. I thought it was just depression but then it turned out it wasn't.


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Re: Do I count as disabled? - September 6th 2014, 09:26 PM

Hey,

I get disability services for my mental health problems. I think if the medical conditions you are dealing with are causing you a great deal of distress and are making it difficult for you to complete your classes then you could qualify. If you can get a doctors note for the disability then they would probably be able to accommodate you to some degree. I think this is something that would be worth looking into.


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Re: Do I count as disabled? - September 12th 2014, 04:10 AM

Agreed with everyone else. You aren't taking anything away from other people. Disability services are there to help people who need accommodations. Whether you personally want to identify as disabled is up to you, however.


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Re: Do I count as disabled? - September 12th 2014, 01:19 PM

Hypothyroidism shouldn't count as a disability. Lots of people have hypothyroidism.

However, IBS, tension headaches, and the mental health problems may qualify you as disabled as it affects your ability to work.
   
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Re: Do I count as disabled? - September 22nd 2014, 09:35 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lelola View Post
Hypothyroidism shouldn't count as a disability. Lots of people have hypothyroidism.
The reason I ask is because it affects my ability to work at uni. What makes something a disability?


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Re: Do I count as disabled? - September 22nd 2014, 01:53 PM

Anything that interferes with your ability to learn or do things is a disability. What you are going through sounds really tough. Taking them up on their offer might be beneficial. As long as it your hypothyroidism affects you in some significant way then you could probably qualify for accommodations. So, read up a little more on this topic and decide if you think it would help you with university. I wish you luck.
   
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Re: Do I count as disabled? - September 22nd 2014, 10:18 PM

If something affects your learning or work and it is "diagnosable" then you would qualify for disability services at universities.

There is nothing wrong with needing help.

I have ADHD and I get help at disability services at my college. But I don't consider myself disabled because I feel like that makes things sound so bad - I am a very capable person and I refuse to apply labels to myself that sound limiting because I am not limited. But just because I refuse to attach "disability" to the fact that I have ADHD does NOT mean that I am "normal", and the world just works better if I access these services (and for the record, I don't want to be normal, normal is overrated. Things like having ADHD make me who I am, but it is not a limitation, but it can be a challenge)




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