The invisible disabled

If like me you have MS and you are still walking. How do you prove your disabled? I only ask as I just had a row with a ticket inspector on London Underground who was convinced I had stolen my freedom pass as I looked too young to have one. There isn’t a disabled logo on it and the picture is faded so I do get his point. But it still annoyed me. Has anyone else had problems like this?

i think we all have. I use a wheelchair, but can walk slightly. One driver huffed and puffed about putting the ramp down and then when I got up - as you have to do on our buses, to physically drag it into the space around a pole! - she was, “you can walk, why you need ramp?”. i said, I’ve got MS, do you want my legs??

If you can get his name and number - you can report him. Theres that campaign, “Not all disabilities are visable”. My partner came across this a lot. He has kidney disease - looks “normal” on the outside, but suffer pain and fatigue. Gets confused easily and the noise of the underground can be over whelming. And he lived in London most of his life! So yeah report him!!

When I was flying a while ago. I was asked to get out of the wheelchair to walk through security. I asked why? NO answer given. Cut a long story short. I was harrassed to do so. I was told I had been seen walking into the toilet earlier! I had on arrival at the airport. Then I asked for the airport assistance and wheelchair. It ended up in a big row. Me loudly asking if he understood about MS. So others could hear. I was trembling and very upset after this. Not like me but that is what happens to me these days. Anne


ah the pole! the number of times i have asked driver for an anglegrinder… their safety bar (that pulls down) is useless-as the ticket inspector found out when my chair slid across the aisle and trapped his leg (several years ago) i cant stand up so its fun sometimes to get self on powerchair into that ‘space’.

sean ryan-i am lucky to be obviously disabled-happened within 24hrs in 2005 so i have no answer other than…its human nature to form an opinion. i have had to train myself not to judge the nhs member of staff or the workman leaving the disabled toilet… they may have been changing their catheter-its not my business. i think you youngsters prob are they same? take care-you will find your way.


It’s really difficult to keep saying to ourselves ‘not all disabilities are visible’, when we see seemingly able bodied people walking away from their car parked in a disabled space.

Some of these people may be misusing someone else’s badge or not have a badge (or a disability) at all.

But they might have the right to their badge and that space. So we stay quiet.

I remember when I first got a disabled badge, I could still walk and drive. I was always anticipating someone challenging me. Luckily (for me) no one ever did.

In a way it’s a good thing that you were challenged. You don’t look disabled, you could have been an able bodied thief. The next person that inspector challenges might be such a thief. It’s a bloody shame you had to have the row about it, but you should feel good that while you have MS you look great.

I wish I looked able bodied still.


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