Woman argues being blind does not make her an incompetent mother

In a guest column in the UK’s Guardian (8/8), Amie Slavin, “who lost her sight in 1997 and has brought up her two daughters by touch,” argued that “being blind does not make her an incompetent mother,” even though some people “assume that she must be.” Slavin, the mother of a three-year-old and a toddler, asserted that “the most difficult thing to deal with is not changing nappies, or feeding and cooking, or the exhausting minefield of sightless household management.” Instead, “the really difficult and demoralizing challenge” she faces “is other people’s attitudes to impairment in general, and to blind parents in particular.” She pointed out that “there aren’t many blind parents, and we are consequently marginalized.” Slavin said she is “regularly quizzed about” her “ability to feed and clean” her “children, the skeptical tone of the questioning barely concealing the suspicion that it’s really” her “husband who does everything.” She took particular issue with the “assumption that” she “must be…incapable of functional living and normal family life.”

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