What Word Should I Use?

By Chelsey Zumpano

I’m not the biggest fan of labels because I feel it puts a certain pressure on us to be a certain way, but we all all have labels and words that people use to describe us.

There are many words that I can use to describe myself blonde,(or whatever hair color my hair is at the time), average height, pale, long piano fingers, and words beyond the physical aspects of myself such as, artist, bookworm, writer, YouTuber, fan girl, and visually impaired.

You might be wondering, (but why do you use the word Visually impaired instead of blind)? Well dear reader, I shall explain after these definitions…

Blind– unable to see because of injury, disease, or a congenital condition.

I don’t describe myself as blind very often because most people assume this means I can not see anything because I do have some vision I only use this word when I don’t have time to explain or want to just get my point across quicker.

Legal blindness is a level of vision loss that has been legally defined to determine eligibility for benefits. In the United States, this refers to a medically diagnosed central visual acuity of 20/200 or less in the better eye with the best possible correction, and/or a visual field of 20 degrees or less.

I usually only use legally blind on paperwork because I think when people hear the word blind it does, (like I said earlier), get your point across quicker and when you use legal along with it, it sounds more official.

Visual impairment/visual disability is “a term that encompasses both those who are blind and those with low vision” (Corn & Lusk, 2010, p. 13). Additional factors influencing visual impairment might be contrast sensitivity, light sensitivity, glare sensitivity, and light/dark adaptation.

I use visually impaired because I like how it sounds, simple, and less like a diagnosis.

For me personally, I believe the words are interchangeable,

Remember you are never alone, you are more than just a diagnosis or label, and to choose the label that feels right for you!

Let me know down in the comments what word or words you choose to describe yourself with?

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Definitions for blind and visually impaired come from American Foundation Of The Blind.

The definition of blind comes from Google.

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One thought on “What Word Should I Use?

  1. I’ve used “visually impaired” as well to describe myself, even though I have no sight apart from a bit of light perception. I often use it on my blog, because “blind or partially sighted” as is common here in the UK, is so long, and why make the distinction, if what you’re about to say applies to both? I wouldn’t call myself partially sighted, because that implies that I have more vision than I do, but I swap between blind or visually impaired, which essentially just means that there is some kind of vision issue, depending on my mood or the situation.

    Liked by 1 person

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