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Carly Findlay: My face scared my cleaner away today

Thanks to Carly Findlay for permission to repost this paragraph. She addresses some of the responses we get from society as disabled women – that we are scary because of our impairments such as what happened to Cerrie Burnell and Rhiam Dean both in 2009 at their work place. We would like to think that things have improved since then but it is not just our employers who discriminate against us but it can also happen with employees too.

This is my face up close. It’s red, shiny and a bit lopsided because of a dodgy lymph node that flares up because of my inflammation. It’s usually very smiley. Sometimes my hair is out of control, and sometimes there’s a few bits of wayward skin hanging off my face and hair. This is who I am.
Earlier this year my face scared the post office worker. Today it scared the cleaner. So much so, she ran away without completing the job.
It’s exhausting having a face that can scare people. Even more exhausting worrying I’m seeming like a victim as I recall events like these.
I work from home now. Every second Monday a cleaner comes. I usually leave the house to go to the library when they come, but today I needed to stay home until I finished something.
I greeted the cleaner, saying hello. She jumped, visibly shocked at my face. I let that one go.
A few minutes later I went out again to tell her to let me know when she needs to vacuum the room I’m in, and I’ll move for her. I spoke before I was in the room. As she turned around to look at me, she jumped again.
I told her “please don’t be scared of my face”, and said this is just how I look. I returned to the other room.
20 minutes later, I finished the task at hand, and realised I couldn’t hear or smell any cleaning being done. I looked through the house. It’s not very big. She wasn’t here.
She just left. Didn’t lock the door. Didn’t let me know. She left because she was scared of how I looked.

Read the rest on Carly’s blog.


2 responses to “Carly Findlay: My face scared my cleaner away today”

  1. Carly says:

    Thanks for sharing

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