Compensation for a birth injury does remove some of the damage caused by it, but there are still lifelong challenges. That’s why it’s important to listen to the voices of disabled people to understand those challenges, rather than making assumptions. This is an important part of disability advocacy.
An article in Yahoo Lifestyle talks about one child’s experience with cerebral palsy and what she wishes her family knew about the condition.
First, cerebral palsy can cause a lack of sleep due to pain and contractures. This can make people with the condition tired in the morning.
Second, due to the way her brain communicates with muscles, reflexes like the startle response can hurt and create embarrassing reactions that can cause emotional pain.
Cerebral palsy also sometimes makes people think that the sufferer has a mental defect or cannot learn. Cerebral palsy is a physical condition that does not affect the mind. People who make harmful assumptions can be offensive, or even discriminatory, against people with CP.
Most importantly, people need to understand that people with CP have their own perspective on the disorder from the inside out. In the piece, the interviewee says that some days she wants a break from her body, but that she also gains benefits from her condition.