[Image description: A bingo card entitled “Cripple Trope Bingo” with boxes filled with the following from the top left corner to right and then down each row: “Dumped after disability”, “Disability as excuse for jerkassery”, “ablesplaining”, “Caregiver uncomfortable with tasks”, Free space, “Disability is miserable with no regard of ableism”, “ableist speculation”, “Disabled person pushes away friends because of shame”, and finally “The disabled don’t have sex”.]
Moyes was trying very hard to fill out her “Cripple Trope” bingo card with this chapter. I want to say it’s impossible that she could jampack another chapter with so many clichés, but I may be surprised.
This review is very long. It’s over 2,700 words because Chapter Four was long with a lot to unpack.
Again, if you’re new please check out the intro and check out the tag for earlier installments.
Trigger warning: towards the end of this review (it’s marked there too) there is a very upsetting conversation about wishing to die over being disabled.
Chapter Four starts off with a description of Lou and Will falling into a routine as two weeks have passed since the last chapter. Except even after all this time Lou is still an ableist asshat.
Or everyone in this is an ableist asshat.
[Image description: A person in a suit with their body bent to literally stick their head up their ass.]
[Trigger warning: I could be this on the entire series really as Me Before You is a hot ableist mess but in particular I will talk about suicide in this installment. Tread carefully.]
In light of what happened in Orlando, I’ve decided in this installment I will address why Me Before You is a disingenuous portrayal of disability in terms of representation (also). I believe representation is the greatest way to fight bigotry. Despite all the strides forward we’ve made there is still a deep-rooted fear of homosexuality in my country and many countries. We need more visibility if we are to ever overcome.
And that includes portraying disabled queer people and disabled people of color who are queer or not.
Yesterday, I was harassed by a group of TSA agents after disclosing my disabled status while seeking the special assistance queue.
My name is Brittany, and I am a woman with an invisible disability.
This article is by a friend of mine that I like everyone to check out. People need to realize the minefield disabled people face just getting from Point A to Point B. As someone with a visible disability I have also been humiliated and bullied by public transport workers.
…they will likely be allowed to continue treating future passengers in this fashion, making more disabled individuals feel less than human, like they are inconveniences, like they deserve the pain and discomfort they feel for existing in the same spaces as able-bodied people, like they are less worthy of respect than the passengers without disabilities who pass through their checkpoint.
Many transportation workers seem to hate the disabled because we are perceived to make their job more difficult, not also passengers trying to get somewhere. Instead of vetting a broken system they turn on the victims instead.
It’s wrong and it needs to stop.
[Image description: empty white chairs gathered around a wooden table with a few green apples in the center and a laptop off to the left side.]
I am very tired of the mantra “just try harder and you’ll be successful!”
I am of the belief hard work does get you places in life. I attended a college with a grueling commute in order to be educated for my former career. I worked hard to be on the honor roll every quarter. I spent hours on my lunch break reviewing again and again for the licensing board exam. I took hours of practice tests until I was getting a 100% on all sections. I passed my exam on one try. I was good at my job and there was no reason I couldn’t have moved onto even bigger and better things because I worked hard.
And all it took was one distracted eighteen year old running a red light to take all that away from me.
I still work hard. I go to class even when I have awful back pain and it feels like I have a knife in my right hip. I go to class in a wheelchair because though I started the semester being able to walk with a cane my condition has deteriorated so much I can barely walk without hours of pain and exhaustion afterwards. I have been accepted to transfer into a university come Fall. My current class is a condition of my admission.
I missed my class for the first time because I am missing my handicap placard. I was in agony at class time and exhausted after a night of insomnia. The idea I may have to park far from my class and roll for half an hour (because trust me wheelchair use is actually slower than walking most of the time thanks to all sorts of obstacles from uneven ground to inaccessible sidewalks) to get there was just too much. I will however have no choice if I cannot relocate my placard as this class must be passed for my Fall admission.
I work very hard to function in a world not made for me.