Etiquette Hell

Etiquette School is in session! => "What an interesting assumption." => Topic started by: . on October 24, 2011, 10:06:15 PM

Title: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: . on October 24, 2011, 10:06:15 PM
I'm recovering from having my spine almost completely destroyed in a car accident (it was rebuilt with titanium and I am, thankfully and miraculously, able to walk and take care of myself now), and for a long time I didn't know how to respond to confrontational, usually older people asking me why I was getting in/getting out of my car that I had parked in the handicap zone. I really don't like having to justify my handicapped placard to anyone, but these confrontations were a bit shocking and so for a while I'd go into a long discussion about my health and recovery. Recently, though, I've found it works well to simply say: "Sometimes bad things happen to young people, too."

Does anyone have any other suggestions of things to say? I don't want to appear rude, and when imagining it in my head, "What an interesting assumption" might come off as condescending.
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Sunbeem on October 24, 2011, 10:10:46 PM
... Recently, though, I've found it works well to simply say: "Sometimes bad things happen to young people, too."...

I can't think of a better one that what you just said.  It is nice and vague, while at the same time pointing out to them that they shouldn't assume that young=perfectly healthy.  And if said in the right tone of voice, it would not sound condescending nor accusatory.
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Lisbeth on October 24, 2011, 10:12:34 PM
"Because it's medically necessary even though that doesn't show."
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Luci on October 24, 2011, 11:18:11 PM
I still need my tag but look pretty spy to the casual observer. Even though I don't really need it at home, I take my cane with me so I don't get questions. It also has saved me from being jostled more than once so I'm glad I have it, it has helped me catch myself when I tripped once, and people don't look at me as entitled when I ask them to please get something from the lowest shelf for me. (I can't bend over yet.)

I do love your "Sometimes bad things happen to young people."
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: kitty-cat on October 24, 2011, 11:34:43 PM
OP, I am so glad that you are healing so well! I'm just over 6 months out from breaking my leg in 2 places from a wreck as well. (pretty sure it didn't compound because of my weight) I hated the looks I got when we were out running errands with me, though the lookers usually left us alone when mom got the wheelchair out.

I use a cane now, for balance and making sure I sit on the shuttle on campus- I can't stand on it anymore...

I love what you say though. Of course you can always say that you are really 85, but you know a really good surgeon :P
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: oz diva on October 24, 2011, 11:46:26 PM
OP, I am so glad that you are healing so well! I'm just over 6 months out from breaking my leg in 2 places from a wreck as well. (pretty sure it didn't compound because of my weight) I hated the looks I got when we were out running errands with me, though the lookers usually left us alone when mom got the wheelchair out.

I use a cane now, for balance and making sure I sit on the shuttle on campus- I can't stand on it anymore...

I love what you say though. Of course you can always say that you are really 85, but you know a really good surgeon :P

Oh that's a great line.  ;D  ;D  ;D
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: rashea on October 25, 2011, 07:52:59 AM
"Because I need to" works fairly well as well. Or, "because my doctor threatened me if I don't" works even better.
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: NutMeg on October 25, 2011, 04:30:22 PM

"Sometimes bad things happen to young people, too."


That is my favourite response that I've read here on eHell. Awesome.

Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Angel B. on October 25, 2011, 04:33:30 PM
What you are saying is great! I'm sorry that people are so rude they have to say that to you, but I'm happy that you're recovering well. :)
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: JacklynHyde on October 25, 2011, 07:57:31 PM
Your verbal spine is as solid as your rebuilt physical one.  The response you have crafted is the most gentle and eloquent one I can imagine.  I hope it leaves those meanies sputtering.
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: wendelenn on October 25, 2011, 08:01:00 PM

"Sometimes bad things happen to young people, too."


That is my favourite response that I've read here on eHell. Awesome.

This is great.
And I have to say, sad as it is that it had to happen, I just LOVE the idea of an e-hellion out there with an ACTUAL titanium spine!
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: VorFemme on October 25, 2011, 08:06:45 PM
There's also a shrug and "accidents happen"............without clarifying anything about what kind of accident. 

But carrying a cane (if it would come in handy) might also work - just don't carry a really cool one that some Entitled Little Princess is going to want to take away from you, like another eHellion (which one I do not recall - but her parents got quite upset when their little Princess didn't get given the Cool Cane).
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Luci on October 25, 2011, 08:11:21 PM
And I have to say, sad as it is that it had to happen, I just LOVE the idea of an e-hellion out there with an ACTUAL titanium spine!

There are lots of us I'm sure! I can't believe that when I begin discussing mine with someone, that person always knows someone who had the similar implants. It's amazing.
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: SamiHami on October 25, 2011, 08:13:56 PM
I think your response is an excellent one; however, I don't think that you are required to answer nosy questions from complete strangers. A frosty stare is all you really need to give them.
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: HoneyBee on October 30, 2011, 10:30:41 AM
Your verbal spine is as solid as your rebuilt physical one.  The response you have crafted is the most gentle and eloquent one I can imagine.  I hope it leaves those meanies sputtering.

I agree.  Very nice response, OP.  I, too, am glad you are recovering well!
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: leftout on October 30, 2011, 10:57:44 AM
It sounds like you already have the perfect response!
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Kaymyth on October 30, 2011, 11:47:36 AM
I still need my tag but look pretty spy to the casual observer. Even though I don't really need it at home, I take my cane with me so I don't get questions. It also has saved me from being jostled more than once so I'm glad I have it, it has helped me catch myself when I tripped once, and people don't look at me as entitled when I ask them to please get something from the lowest shelf for me. (I can't bend over yet.)

I do love your "Sometimes bad things happen to young people."

Sadly, this won't always save you.  Housemate has the unfortunate combination of having both a chronic illness that requires the use of a cane sometime and an aura that attracts the Crazy.  On at least two occasions, she's had complete strangers march up to her, snatch her cane away, and scold her because she's "too young to be disabled". 

It's completely mind-boggling.
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: RubySlippers on November 01, 2011, 01:20:01 PM
Do you not have a handicapped sticker or whatever on display in your car?  I have glared at people in handicapped spots when they do not have a sticker and seem quite nimble.  But if one has the correct documentation properly displayed, then it's not up to you to explain your disability to any nosy old busybody.
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Nora on November 01, 2011, 01:48:52 PM

"Sometimes bad things happen to young people, too."


That is my favourite response that I've read here on eHell. Awesome.

Mine too, and I'm totally stealing it! I hate feeling like I have to bring my cane places, when I could probably do without it that day, just because I hate it when this occurs. People are really incredibly nosy!
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Lorelei_Evil on November 01, 2011, 01:57:15 PM
I still need my tag but look pretty spy to the casual observer. Even though I don't really need it at home, I take my cane with me so I don't get questions. It also has saved me from being jostled more than once so I'm glad I have it, it has helped me catch myself when I tripped once, and people don't look at me as entitled when I ask them to please get something from the lowest shelf for me. (I can't bend over yet.)

I do love your "Sometimes bad things happen to young people."


Sadly, this won't always save you.  Housemate has the unfortunate combination of having both a chronic illness that requires the use of a cane sometime and an aura that attracts the Crazy.  On at least two occasions, she's had complete strangers march up to her, snatch her cane away, and scold her because she's "too young to be disabled". 

It's completely mind-boggling.

I've had that happen to me a couple of times, too.  Both times I had a high velocity impact with the ground as I wasn't expecting it.  Funny, the Crazy took off and didn't help me up!  Berating me for being a "faker" as they went the first time, the second nutter just took off.


Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Nora on November 01, 2011, 02:43:36 PM
I still need my tag but look pretty spy to the casual observer. Even though I don't really need it at home, I take my cane with me so I don't get questions. It also has saved me from being jostled more than once so I'm glad I have it, it has helped me catch myself when I tripped once, and people don't look at me as entitled when I ask them to please get something from the lowest shelf for me. (I can't bend over yet.)

I do love your "Sometimes bad things happen to young people."

I've had that happen to me a couple of times, too.  Both times I had a high velocity impact with the ground as I wasn't expecting it.  Funny, the Crazy took off and didn't help me up!  Berating me for being a "faker" as they went the first time, the second nutter just took off.


Sadly, this won't always save you.  Housemate has the unfortunate combination of having both a chronic illness that requires the use of a cane sometime and an aura that attracts the Crazy.  On at least two occasions, she's had complete strangers march up to her, snatch her cane away, and scold her because she's "too young to be disabled". 

It's completely mind-boggling.


I've had kids hold on to, and jostle my cane. Strangers kids. Without their parent intervening. My mind is blown every time.
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Luci on November 01, 2011, 04:35:21 PM
Do you not have a handicapped sticker or whatever on display in your car?  I have glared at people in handicapped spots when they do not have a sticker and seem quite nimble.  But if one has the correct documentation properly displayed, then it's not up to you to explain your disability to any nosy old busybody.

I'm sure we all have the handicapped plates or tags (mine is a hanger because it is temporary and my dad's was permanent but he always rode with other people). I sometimes wonder if people who glare think we are using someone else's hangtag or car.

I live in a very polite town, so I've never had any crueltly, no crowds so I can watch out for random children. I've certainly heard the horror stories and believe them.
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: pierrotlunaire0 on November 09, 2011, 04:13:31 PM
I work at the DMV, and dispense the placards.  I once had a lady (maybe 30?) who told me horror stories about being physically threatened because she wasn't old, and therefore didn't need it.  Her disability?  Congestive heart disease.

On another occasion, an older woman didn't see why we wouldn't just give her one, because they "were a courtesy that we issue to senior citizens."  No, ma'am, I am sorry, but age has nothing to do with it.  The issue is strictly whether the applicant has trouble moving from a parking spot and into a building.
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: MrsVandy on November 09, 2011, 08:15:33 PM
I'm going to give these answers to DH. He's got Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease and has trouble walking, especially on uneven surfaces such as uni stone. However to most people he appears although nothing is amiss, even when he's using his cane and he gets a lot of strange looks and people being busy bodies. Currently he just pretends that he doesn't see the staring and can't hear people asking.
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: It's good to be Queen on December 22, 2011, 11:20:31 AM
I love your answer, too bad it won't work for me, as I approach 50 I can't really call myself young anymore!

I was oxygen dependant for a while (I have much improved and no longer need it all of the time yeah!!!!!!) and one day when I was feeling good, I decided I didn't need it to go to the grocery store.  I parked in the handicapped spot and had someone tell me I shouldn't park there.  I said I had a permit and kept walking.  She actually followed me and berated me about being a slacker and not needing the spot.  I finally stopped, turned and told her it was the first day I had felt good enough to leave the house without portable oxygen, that I had been feeling pretty good about myself but now she had ruined my day.  She muttered something about me being too touchy and walked away.

Some people feel they need to be the handicpped parking police - I will never understand why!
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: drebay on December 22, 2011, 11:49:06 AM
Not to rain on your hopefulness, but that response doesn't work as well as you moght hope.  I have tried a variation.  I was yelled at for parking in the "Old People Parking" spots.  As I was in pain, going to get more pain meds, I was not in the best EHell mood.  I asked the person where is stated a minumum age for parking there, as I had my own tag.  When I mentioned that I have pain despite being 40ish, I was told to suck it up.  :'(
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: violinp on December 22, 2011, 11:51:55 AM
I still need my tag but look pretty spy to the casual observer. Even though I don't really need it at home, I take my cane with me so I don't get questions. It also has saved me from being jostled more than once so I'm glad I have it, it has helped me catch myself when I tripped once, and people don't look at me as entitled when I ask them to please get something from the lowest shelf for me. (I can't bend over yet.)

I do love your "Sometimes bad things happen to young people."

Sadly, this won't always save you.  Housemate has the unfortunate combination of having both a chronic illness that requires the use of a cane sometime and an aura that attracts the Crazy.  On at least two occasions, she's had complete strangers march up to her, snatch her cane away, and scold her because she's "too young to be disabled". 

It's completely mind-boggling.

Snatched her cane away... :o Who on earth would do something like that??
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Lorelei_Evil on December 22, 2011, 12:10:59 PM
It's happened to me on more than one occasion, too. 
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: mabelle on December 22, 2011, 12:36:49 PM
Do you not have a handicapped sticker or whatever on display in your car?  I have glared at people in handicapped spots when they do not have a sticker and seem quite nimble.  But if one has the correct documentation properly displayed, then it's not up to you to explain your disability to any nosy old busybody.

I'm sure we all have the handicapped plates or tags (mine is a hanger because it is temporary and my dad's was permanent but he always rode with other people). I sometimes wonder if people who glare think we are using someone else's hangtag or car.

I live in a very polite town, so I've never had any crueltly, no crowds so I can watch out for random children. I've certainly heard the horror stories and believe them.

My mother is wheelchair bound (RA), and while she'd never confront someone who didn't appear to be handicapped, she WOULD if their placard and their apparent age didn't add up. In her state, the hanging tags display the birthday/year of the assigned person, because there is so much fraud (misuse of valid tags by non-handicapped relations/friends). So a chippy young lass of early 20s alone in a vehicle with WWII veteran license plates and a hanging tag that reads 1/20/1924...would get a "you know you're not supposed to use the handicap space unless the disabled person is in the vehicle" from my mom. Might not be etiquette approved, but I don't care.

Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Sanity Lost on December 22, 2011, 04:00:30 PM
My dad has used a cane since his early 20's (degenerative bone muscle disease) and only once had someone attempt to grab his cane. Fortunately he was accompanied by my younger brother and I (both in our early teens). I had been holding his other hand and Bro was slightly behind him. This guy about Dad's age grabbed his cane and started to yell at him. I managed to hold Dad up and Bro body checked the guy and grabbed Dad's cane. Bro then informed him that he best leave before he needed emergency services (Bro was still holding the cane). Bro even at 13 had a deep bass voice, a very muscled physique and a no nonsense attitude. Guy picked himself up and walked off muttering about rude people and disrespectful brats.

Not the polite way to handle it; but Bro was not (and still isn't) known for his diplomatic skills and this guy seriously scared us.
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Luci on December 22, 2011, 06:12:12 PM
My dad has used a cane since his early 20's (degenerative bone muscle disease) and only once had someone attempt to grab his cane. Fortunately he was accompanied by my younger brother and I (both in our early teens). I had been holding his other hand and Bro was slightly behind him. This guy about Dad's age grabbed his cane and started to yell at him. I managed to hold Dad up and Bro body checked the guy and grabbed Dad's cane. Bro then informed him that he best leave before he needed emergency services (Bro was still holding the cane). Bro even at 13 had a deep bass voice, a very muscled physique and a no nonsense attitude. Guy picked himself up and walked off muttering about rude people and disrespectful brats.

Not the polite way to handle it; but Bro was not (and still isn't) known for his diplomatic skills and this guy seriously scared us.

Safety trumps etiquette. Your little brother for a win. I think this was an emergency situation.
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: kherbert05 on December 22, 2011, 07:21:17 PM


My mother is wheelchair bound (RA), and while she'd never confront someone who didn't appear to be handicapped, she WOULD if their placard and their apparent age didn't add up. In her state, the hanging tags display the birthday/year of the assigned person, because there is so much fraud (misuse of valid tags by non-handicapped relations/friends). So a chippy young lass of early 20s alone in a vehicle with WWII veteran license plates and a hanging tag that reads 1/20/1924...would get a "you know you're not supposed to use the handicap space unless the disabled person is in the vehicle" from my mom. Might not be etiquette approved, but I don't care.


I understand the sentiment - but in my family we try to never take the last space unless the person the tag is for is driving. We will pull into the space unload the person the tag is for and most of the party. Then the driver will move the car to a regular space. Freeing up the space for someone like the OP, who is driving and needs the close space. Then at the end of dinner/shopping/movie two of us will hike out to the back 40 get the car and if a handicapped space is available park there to load the rest back in. If there isn't a space available the person we go to the nearest loading zone and load there.


When sis broke both her knees she was quiet strong minded about not taking up a handicapped space when she was being driven around. Others needed it more.
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: camlan on December 22, 2011, 07:30:26 PM
My SIL gets this a lot. She's not disabled, but my nephew, her oldest child, is. They have a wheelchair van and need the handicapped spots so they can lower the wheelchair ramp. The usual routine is that SIL parks, gets out of the van, goes over to the ramp and then lowers it with the remote. She doesn't want Nephew, who can be a bit careless in parking lots, getting out of the van until she's right there with him.

More than once I've been with her and she's been yelled at or called ugly names, up to the point where the ramp lowers and Nephew wheels out.

But one time I was there and an elderly man started in on her as soon as she got out of the van. She tried to explain that the placard was for her son, but the man wasn't listening. Then Nephew got out of the van and SIL pointed out that they needed the spot. To which the elderly man replied that they didn't--because Nephew wasn't driving.

Because you could only possibly need the handicapped spot if you were driving.

Nephew is 13; they aren't going to give him a license for a few years yet, if at all.
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Kimblee on December 22, 2011, 08:16:50 PM
My SIL gets this a lot. She's not disabled, but my nephew, her oldest child, is. They have a wheelchair van and need the handicapped spots so they can lower the wheelchair ramp. The usual routine is that SIL parks, gets out of the van, goes over to the ramp and then lowers it with the remote. She doesn't want Nephew, who can be a bit careless in parking lots, getting out of the van until she's right there with him.

More than once I've been with her and she's been yelled at or called ugly names, up to the point where the ramp lowers and Nephew wheels out.

But one time I was there and an elderly man started in on her as soon as she got out of the van. She tried to explain that the placard was for her son, but the man wasn't listening. Then Nephew got out of the van and SIL pointed out that they needed the spot. To which the elderly man replied that they didn't--because Nephew wasn't driving.
Because you could only possibly need the handicapped spot if you were driving.

Nephew is 13; they aren't going to give him a license for a few years yet, if at all.

The (very non-eHell) term for this is "butthurt"

As in, the old guy KNEW he was wrong at that point, but could not bring himself to admit it so he lashed out one more time to soothe his butthurt.

My dad approves (and partially dictated) this message. He also would like to make it clear that anyone who gets to wrestle a big darn wheelchair deserves to park where ever its possible to wrestle said chair. (He worked in the MHMR field for fifteen years or so.)
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: zyrs on December 24, 2011, 06:25:12 AM
My SIL gets this a lot. She's not disabled, but my nephew, her oldest child, is. They have a wheelchair van and need the handicapped spots so they can lower the wheelchair ramp. The usual routine is that SIL parks, gets out of the van, goes over to the ramp and then lowers it with the remote. She doesn't want Nephew, who can be a bit careless in parking lots, getting out of the van until she's right there with him.

More than once I've been with her and she's been yelled at or called ugly names, up to the point where the ramp lowers and Nephew wheels out.

But one time I was there and an elderly man started in on her as soon as she got out of the van. She tried to explain that the placard was for her son, but the man wasn't listening. Then Nephew got out of the van and SIL pointed out that they needed the spot. To which the elderly man replied that they didn't--because Nephew wasn't driving.

Because you could only possibly need the handicapped spot if you were driving.

Nephew is 13; they aren't going to give him a license for a few years yet, if at all.

Unfortunately. this could have been my FIL.  He's always griping about how no one should use the handicapped spaces except elderly people.
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: drebay on December 27, 2011, 05:45:24 PM
Unfortunately. this could have been my FIL.  He's always griping about how no one should use the handicapped spaces except elderly people.

Which is why my earlier post is what it is
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: gmatoy on January 04, 2012, 08:39:28 PM
I'm another one who had her cane pushed out from under me; I was in front of a table and clutched at it while going white in pain. The woman called me a "Drama Queen."  Totally ruined my day. Then my mother told me that if I didn't care about that woman's opinion about religion, politics, or global warning I shouldn't care about her very wrong opinion about me. (My mother rocks!) Helped me.
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: nuit93 on January 04, 2012, 10:43:29 PM
Well...since you have the placard displayed, you don't OWE them any explanation.  But since people are rude, it sounds like you have the perfect answer already!
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: emwithme on January 05, 2012, 12:07:43 PM
I've been told that I'm too young to need a disabled parking space.  I have ME and fibromyalgia, and (depending on how that day's going) I use either one stick, two sticks, a wheelchair or - on a good day - I can manage by myself.  Usually in a supermarket, I'll use the trolley to lean on so I don't tend to take my sticks with me (I can generally manage from the car to where the trolleys are kept).

I've also been told that I can't have ME because I'm out and about.  At this point, I haven't been out of the house since Tuesday lunchtime (it's now Thursday evening) because the pain (a) makes it too hard to get dressed and (b) makes me slower and so I have difficulty crossing the road between my house and the rest of the village.  Fortunately, when I'm like this, my DF goes and does all the chores. 

I do get that it's difficult for people to equate (relatively) young - I'm 34 - and healthy-looking with disabled, especially when I'm dressed smartly.  Sometimes, however, the reason I've dressed smartly, done my hair and put some makeup on is because without it I look like death warmed up and I need to boost my self-esteem enough to be able to go out.  And a lot of the time, there's a HUGE difference in how I'm walking and how I look when I get out of the car on arrival to how I look getting back to the car having done whatever. 
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Elfmama on January 05, 2012, 01:53:30 PM
And a lot of the time, there's a HUGE difference in how I'm walking and how I look when I get out of the car on arrival to how I look getting back to the car having done whatever.
Exactly!  If you say to me "I saw you walking in from way out in the parking lot.  You don't need that scooter if you could do that" I will tell you that I use the scooter so that I CAN walk from the store back to my car.  My fibro is at a stage where there is a very sharp dividing line from "more or less OK" and "can barely move from the pain"; that line is crossed with a certain distance walked, which changes from day to day. (One reason that I don't have a handicapped placard.)  If I walk around the store, especially for a full shopping trip up and down all the aisles, I will be in agony about halfway through it.  If I have a scooter, I'll stay at the first stage.
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Lorelei_Evil on January 05, 2012, 02:06:32 PM
I hear you.  I frequently have to warn that "I'm running out of steps" during shopping trips.  I'm good for a couple of hours of walking with the stick on a good day, but if the pain is bad, I run out of steps quickly and the line between OK but tired and DONE is very thin.

Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: emwithme on January 06, 2012, 03:31:47 PM
Have you heard of the Spoon Theory (http://www.butyoudontlooksick.com/articles/written-by-christine/the-spoon-theory-written-by-christine-miserandino/)

I find it really handy, especially now I've trained DF to understand that physical, emotional and mental spoons are all on different, but linked, meters.
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: drebay on January 06, 2012, 03:40:20 PM
Have you heard of the Spoon Theory (http://www.butyoudontlooksick.com/articles/written-by-christine/the-spoon-theory-written-by-christine-miserandino/)

I find it really handy, especially now I've trained DF to understand that physical, emotional and mental spoons are all on different, but linked, meters.

That is exactly my situation.  Someone (was it you?) emailed me that link in the past.
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Lorelei_Evil on January 06, 2012, 03:46:41 PM
It's a cute theory, but my good days and bad days are so erratic I usually end up with a fistful of forks.

Too euphemistic for my crowd, I think. 
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: JacklynHyde on January 06, 2012, 08:07:52 PM
Have you heard of the Spoon Theory (http://www.butyoudontlooksick.com/articles/written-by-christine/the-spoon-theory-written-by-christine-miserandino/)

I find it really handy, especially now I've trained DF to understand that physical, emotional and mental spoons are all on different, but linked, meters.
Oh my...  I think I start to understand.

One of my new friends has Lupus.  Her husband left her and she had to move halfway across the country back to her parents' home.  She's an immensely funny lady and even has a stand-up comedy act she's brought with her to hone.  Now I understand why that smile of hers doesn't always go to her eyes.  The fact she doesn't have handicapped plates or tags amazes me.  She must play her spoons close to the chest.
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Nora on January 07, 2012, 08:07:36 AM
I hear you.  I frequently have to warn that "I'm running out of steps" during shopping trips.  I'm good for a couple of hours of walking with the stick on a good day, but if the pain is bad, I run out of steps quickly and the line between OK but tired and DONE is very thin.

Are you me? I also measure things in how many steps I feel I may have left for the day, but my guesswork is due to the thin line mentioned above often severely flawed. Suddenly I can't manage to lift my cane high enough to not trip over the cobblestone roads, whereas during a good phase I don't need the cane for months and months.

The irregularity of my condition tricks my head into thinking "If I could walk 10 miles last week, then 2 miles right now should be fine, right". Just a shame that last-week-body has left the building, and today-body feels like lying down in the middle of the road.  :-\
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Luci on January 07, 2012, 08:20:55 AM
These stories are making me weep. The conditions you guys are living with and the cruelty/thoughtlessness/stupidity of people are things I don't understand.

I was always kind and nonjudgemental before, but my temporary condition makes me even more so.
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Elfmama on January 07, 2012, 09:12:30 AM
I don't get it often, Luci -- maybe I look too scary! ;D 

Etiquette question: When we are accosted by busy-bodies like this, is it allowable to say "Well, hallelujah!  I'll just run over and tell my rheumatologist and physical therapist that some random woman in the Walmart parking lot says I'm cured!"
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Delta on January 31, 2012, 02:58:27 PM
Another one who has had her cane taken by others - I have a bad right knee and have had several surgeries - I don't always use it, but if its acting up or if I've done something to hurt it again (like falling on the ice in the winter which happens often) I use it. I've actually had a woman demand to see a Doctor's note stating what my disability was, despite having a placard for my car shortly after having ACL surgery.
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: drebay on January 31, 2012, 03:19:32 PM
I had someone tell me that my cane was just for show.  Why?  It must be because it is pink.   ???
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Delta on January 31, 2012, 04:21:43 PM
I had someone tell me that my cane was just for show.  Why?  It must be because it is pink.   ???

I have a good friend who had a complete hip and knee replacement in her teens - one year she found a fantastic dress for a Christmas party, but her cane totally clashed with it, so me and another friend bought a cane at the Salvation army, cut it to the right size for her, and "blingified" it with crystals and whatnot - she LOVED it, and even used it when she was out and about at the mall, etc and got tons of compliments. Why CAN'T a cane be both functional and "for show" in a good way? *grin*
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: emwithme on February 04, 2012, 12:14:10 PM
I had someone tell me that my cane was just for show.  Why?  It must be because it is pink.   ???

I have a good friend who had a complete hip and knee replacement in her teens - one year she found a fantastic dress for a Christmas party, but her cane totally clashed with it, so me and another friend bought a cane at the Salvation army, cut it to the right size for her, and "blingified" it with crystals and whatnot - she LOVED it, and even used it when she was out and about at the mall, etc and got tons of compliments. Why CAN'T a cane be both functional and "for show" in a good way? *grin*

I started using a stick between Christmas and New Year 2010.  For my birthday last year (February), I bought myself a fabulous (http://www.switchsticks.com/viewimage.asp/SKU=WLUXCAN) stick, so now I have one black one and one stripy one - sticks for every occasion.

As Switch Sticks say, you've got to put the FUN into functional!
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Sirius on February 17, 2012, 02:05:36 PM
When I was in Idaho I saw a man sitting in a store who had a beautiful hand-carved cane.  I complimented it, and he told me it had been made by a local Native American artist. 

When I was a youngster I was taught that people who walked with canes/used crutches or wheelchairs or walkers, et that type of cetera were doing it because they needed to, and if my mother had heard about me or my siblings taunting or teasing someone thus equipped we'd have been made to apologize then we'd have been punished.  I don't understand people who tease or taunt people for using assistive devices that they need. 
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Nora on February 17, 2012, 07:00:29 PM
Neither do I. It's very icy here, and I managed to tear up an old injury while slipping on the sidewalk. I am already dreading the possibility I might slip again and have to walk with a cane for a while. People always seem to think it makes me about 30 IQ points dumber.
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: lilihob on February 18, 2012, 03:08:07 AM

I started using a stick between Christmas and New Year 2010.  For my birthday last year (February), I bought myself a fabulous (http://www.switchsticks.com/viewimage.asp/SKU=WLUXCAN) stick, so now I have one black one and one stripy one - sticks for every occasion.

As Switch Sticks say, you've got to put the FUN into functional!
[/quote]

I have "grown in " to my disability, the older I get, the less comments I get.
 At 20, "you're too young, you need;
physio
medication
prayer
to stop faking
to repent your sins ::)
Now, I want that stick!!!
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Elfmama on February 18, 2012, 05:17:33 PM
I have "grown in " to my disability, the older I get, the less comments I get.
 At 20, "you're too young, you need;
physio
medication
prayer
to stop faking
to repent your sins ::)
Now, I want that stick!!!
THAT is justifiable homicide, IMHO.  >:(  I was only 36 when I was finally diagnosed with fibromyalgia, and I got that line from my MIL.  Yeah, I was "faking" extreme pain walking upstairs, or doing anything with my hands.  I was "faking" that my hands felt like someone had put them on a table and beat on them with a baseball bat. 

Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: nuit93 on February 20, 2012, 07:15:07 PM
Neither do I. It's very icy here, and I managed to tear up an old injury while slipping on the sidewalk. I am already dreading the possibility I might slip again and have to walk with a cane for a while. People always seem to think it makes me about 30 IQ points dumber.

Microspikes are an awesome way to avoid slipping on ice/snow!

http://www.amazon.com/Kahtoola-MICROspikes-Pocket-Traction-System/dp/B0010RHW2G/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1329786880&sr=8-1

They're not cheap, but they've saved me a few ER trips.
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Lorelei_Evil on February 20, 2012, 07:21:07 PM
Yaktrax are a little less lethal but also do a fine job.
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Asharah on February 20, 2012, 08:11:18 PM
I love your answer, too bad it won't work for me, as I approach 50 I can't really call myself young anymore!

I was oxygen dependent for a while (I have much improved and no longer need it all of the time yeah!!!!!!) and one day when I was feeling good, I decided I didn't need it to go to the grocery store.  I parked in the handicapped spot and had someone tell me I shouldn't park there.  I said I had a permit and kept walking.  She actually followed me and berated me about being a slacker and not needing the spot.  I finally stopped, turned and told her it was the first day I had felt good enough to leave the house without portable oxygen, that I had been feeling pretty good about myself but now she had ruined my day.  She muttered something about me being too touchy and walked away.

Some people feel they need to be the handicapped parking police - I will never understand why!
So she follows you around and harasses you and calls you names, but you're being "too touchy" when you get fed up and tell her off? What a piece of work!
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Nora on February 21, 2012, 10:27:55 AM
Neither do I. It's very icy here, and I managed to tear up an old injury while slipping on the sidewalk. I am already dreading the possibility I might slip again and have to walk with a cane for a while. People always seem to think it makes me about 30 IQ points dumber.

Microspikes are an awesome way to avoid slipping on ice/snow!

http://www.amazon.com/Kahtoola-MICROspikes-Pocket-Traction-System/dp/B0010RHW2G/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1329786880&sr=8-1

They're not cheap, but they've saved me a few ER trips.

I have these, and they certainly are not cheap, aaaaand naturally I keep mislaying the heck out of them. I haven't seen them since november. I'm terrible at keeping track of stuff like this. Luckily my ankle heard me itching on the internet, and decided it could just heal itself already. Also yesterday most of the snow in my town rained away.
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: JoW on February 23, 2012, 09:23:25 PM
Neither do I. It's very icy here, and I managed to tear up an old injury while slipping on the sidewalk. I am already dreading the possibility I might slip again and have to walk with a cane for a while. People always seem to think it makes me about 30 IQ points dumber.

Microspikes are an awesome way to avoid slipping on ice/snow!

http://www.amazon.com/Kahtoola-MICROspikes-Pocket-Traction-System/dp/B0010RHW2G/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1329786880&sr=8-1

They're not cheap, but they've saved me a few ER trips.

I have these, and they certainly are not cheap, aaaaand naturally I keep mislaying the heck out of them. I haven't seen them since november. I'm terrible at keeping track of stuff like this. Luckily my ankle heard me itching on the internet, and decided it could just heal itself already. Also yesterday most of the snow in my town rained away.
Those things look great.  I have similar but with a lot less metal.  They cost a lot less than those cost.  I got mine at a sporting goods store, in the ice fishing supplies. 

My driveway was a sheet of ice all last week.  I wore them to get the mail. 
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Trellia on February 26, 2012, 09:40:30 PM
I have fibromyalgia and sometimes require a cane to get from point A to point B. One of my best friends managed to combine my love of dolphins and swords into a fantastic metal cane with a dolphin-shaped handle and a concealed dagger for a birthday gift. Unfortunately, it's illegal in most public areas but is very helpful for walking around the block. I have another 4-footed cane that I might have to decorate up as a bellydance-style cane one day. On my bad days I need it to walk, on my good days I can spin and dance with it!  ;D
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: SeaSprite on March 25, 2012, 12:59:15 AM
Have you heard of the Spoon Theory (http://www.butyoudontlooksick.com/articles/written-by-christine/the-spoon-theory-written-by-christine-miserandino/)

I find it really handy, especially now I've trained DF to understand that physical, emotional and mental spoons are all on different, but linked, meters.

That is exactly my situation.  Someone (was it you?) emailed me that link in the past.


It may have been me or someone else entirely but I know shortly after I came here i shared it a few times and still do where I can :)
It helped dh and my family a lot. Unfortunately dh has gone down from the stress of me being sick and being the only breadwinner, so now he has limited spoons as well. But we can tell each other "we need to leave soon/in x minutes/because I am down to my last/running out of spoons" I wasn't able to get out this week-our 20th anniversary was this week. I was going to do a twist on something he did for me and get a spoon bouquet.
I had the placard before I had the cane and was barely under 30 at the time and the stares, the snarks, the snipes omy. We still get them and I now have the cane and oxygen tank.
It used to disturb me that many elderly people give me grief over the cane! Some who don't have one themselves-though I never assume that means they don't use one-they may be having a day that they don't need it  and it may be in their car just in case. But the assumptions that they have made about and to me. Most of that occurred before I found this site. I now have 'that's an interesting assumption" in my arsenal.
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: kitty-cat on March 26, 2012, 08:43:52 AM
I'm currently riding the bus again, and the looks I get for sitting up front... At the end of the day though, my leg hurts to high heavens, and I try to minimize my steps.

I had one lady ask me "are you handicapped?" in a really snotty tone of voice. (Seriously, imagine the mean girls from high school, that's what it sounded like). I have gotten better with my spine though- I looked her straight in the eye and said "Yes, I am." in a flat tone of voice. My cane was sitting *right* next to me too....
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Winterlight on April 05, 2012, 03:47:04 PM

"Sometimes bad things happen to young people, too."


That is my favourite response that I've read here on eHell. Awesome.

The perfect response. Couple it with an icy tone and a, "How dare you" stare.
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: bopper on May 09, 2012, 02:01:12 PM
(http://failblog.files.wordpress.com/2012/05/epic-win-photos-win-parking-space-win.jpg)
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: It's good to be Queen on May 16, 2012, 11:35:21 AM
I have a handicapped parking pass.  I do not look disabled, but I am .  I am subject to many comments, glares, etc.  One woman demanded to know why I was entitled to handicapped parking.  I told her that my doctor decided I needed it, end of story.  She persisted with asking why, saying that I should be reported to the police, etc.  I finally told her that I was under no obligation to disclose my personal medical informaiton to her and that she should feel free to report me to the police.  Then, of course, I lost it and started crying.  I should not have to defend myself against every parking lot vigilante who thinks they can decide who is and is not handicapped.  I have my good days and bad ones, and people like her can really ruin my mood on a good day.
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Mopsy428 on May 27, 2012, 11:57:07 AM
I had called my accountant about taking tax deductions for medical expenses. I first spoke with her secretary, and the secretary asked me if I had any changes to my taxes. I explained that I would probably be taking medical expenses deductions. She says to me, "Oh, it's only if the expenses are over a certain amount. It's usually only for people who are really sick or have huge medical bills. You're not that old, and it's good that you are healthy."

I said, "Yes, I realize the tax laws. Also, please keep in mind that I got laid off, and then got major kidney problems, and my health insurance didn't cover many of my expenses. So, yes, I might be young, but young is not synonymous with 'healthy'. So I *will* be taking a huge deduction even though it's only medical expenses over x% of my income."  ::)

Have these people never heard of young people dying young from natural causes? It's not out of the question for sickness to strike young people.
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Browyn on May 27, 2012, 06:16:54 PM
I have a handicapped parking pass.  I do not look disabled, but I am .  I am subject to many comments, glares, etc.  One woman demanded to know why I was entitled to handicapped parking.  I told her that my doctor decided I needed it, end of story.  She persisted with asking why, saying that I should be reported to the police, etc.  I finally told her that I was under no obligation to disclose my personal medical informaiton to her and that she should feel free to report me to the police.  Then, of course, I lost it and started crying.  I should not have to defend myself against every parking lot vigilante who thinks they can decide who is and is not handicapped.  I have my good days and bad ones, and people like her can really ruin my mood on a good day.

You know I never look at the person driving, I look at the car.  If there is no handicap license or tag hanging from the mirror then I might call the non emergency police number.  Otherwise it myob for me.
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Bottlecaps on June 16, 2012, 02:09:28 PM
A family friend was subject to ridicule for being young but parking in a handicapped spot (with the tag hanging on the rearview). An elderly man pulled up behind her and said, "You know, that spot is reserved for handicapped people only!" (He obviously didn't even bother to look for her tag. She said, "My son is handicapped and he is in the store!" He cowered and drove away. Obviously she was under no obligation to disclose why she was parked there, but I think in the heat of the moment, she said what came to mind, which was the truth.

(Back story: Her son was in his teens at this time, now in his late 20s, and he has MS. He has trouble walking because of it and sometimes has to use a wheelchair to get around when he gets too worn out to continue trying to walk.)
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: JacklynHyde on June 16, 2012, 03:02:33 PM
Unless I see someone park at the designated spot, point to the sign, and start laughing and twirling a mustache like Snidely Whiplash, I shall assume the driver or passenger needs that spot.

(http://wac.0873.edgecastcdn.net/800873/blog/wp-content/uploads/Snidely1.jpg)
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Marisol on June 16, 2012, 05:38:34 PM
I have a handicapped parking pass.  I do not look disabled, but I am .  I am subject to many comments, glares, etc.  One woman demanded to know why I was entitled to handicapped parking.  I told her that my doctor decided I needed it, end of story.  She persisted with asking why, saying that I should be reported to the police, etc.  I finally told her that I was under no obligation to disclose my personal medical informaiton to her and that she should feel free to report me to the police.  Then, of course, I lost it and started crying.  I should not have to defend myself against every parking lot vigilante who thinks they can decide who is and is not handicapped.  I have my good days and bad ones, and people like her can really ruin my mood on a good day.



When you started crying did that person back off or apologize?
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Giggity on June 17, 2012, 02:39:52 PM
Why dignify these people's impertinence with a response? I'd blink a couple times and ask, "Do I know you?", and walk off. Why talk to them?
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: pierrotlunaire0 on June 18, 2012, 07:46:30 AM
I wonder if it would work to fix them with a glare and say, "What gives you the right to harrass a person with a disability?"
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: rashea on June 18, 2012, 08:36:49 AM
Why dignify these people's impertinence with a response? I'd blink a couple times and ask, "Do I know you?", and walk off. Why talk to them?

Because they start screaming obscenities and call the police. At least it happened to me once. Very interesting to have the police show up at my University class (not hard to find me). Thankfully the police office knew me, and knew that I really was just celebrating having a good day so the fact that I was walking instead of using my chair that day didn't mean much to him.
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Chip2 on June 19, 2012, 09:18:45 AM
I had my knee scoped a couple weeks ago and for the first few days used my walker to get around. I had a follow-up with the surgeon a few days after the procedure and was sitting in his waiting room with my leg up on the walker. The town I'm in is right next to a military base so it's not unusual to see younger folks walking around with canes and the like, but I guess a walker was too confusing for some. A semi-elderly lady approached me and asked me to move my leg so she could give the walker to her husband (who was using an older, less well-kept walker).

I said, "Sorry, but this is mine."

"That's not yours! And you don't need it anyway!" and she reached to take it from me.

I (and my son) got our hands on it before she could. I offered to unwrap my knee and show her the incisions, and told her that I've had the walker for over five years. She harrumphed a couple of times and said I was too young to need a walker. I just looked at my knee and back at her. Everybody else in the waiting room was staring at her, and she eventually got the hint.
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Cz. Burrito on June 19, 2012, 09:23:53 AM
I can't believe the horrible things that you guys are experiencing with people trying to take away your canes and walkers.   >:(
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Lorelei_Evil on June 19, 2012, 09:45:02 AM
I had to stop carrying my "cool looking" cane, people were always angling for me to give it to them since I didn't "need" it and was just lazy.  "If you weren't so lazy and worked harder, you could walk right, faker."

Then I switched to a trekking pole and people don't mess with me much. 
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: Jones on June 19, 2012, 10:09:47 AM
Due to an old knee injury, my husband has to use a cane on occasion. Thankfully, no one has demanded asked him for it, however he does get funny looks at times...he's only 30, why would he need a cane, right?

If anyone said anything it would burn my biscuits.
Title: Re: "You're so young, why on Earth are you parking in the handicap spot?!"
Post by: It's good to be Queen on June 21, 2012, 02:13:48 PM
Quote
Quote
I have a handicapped parking pass.  I do not look disabled, but I am .  I am subject to many comments, glares, etc.  One woman demanded to know why I was entitled to handicapped parking.  I told her that my doctor decided I needed it, end of story.  She persisted with asking why, saying that I should be reported to the police, etc.  I finally told her that I was under no obligation to disclose my personal medical informaiton to her and that she should feel free to report me to the police.  Then, of course, I lost it and started crying.  I should not have to defend myself against every parking lot vigilante who thinks they can decide who is and is not handicapped.  I have my good days and bad ones, and people like her can really ruin my mood on a good day.

When you started crying did that person back off or apologize?

Neither, she just walked away shaking her head like I was a drama queen AND a faker.