What is Ableism? With Lene Andersen


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Episode at a glance:

  • 0:00 - 3:25: Lene’s journey with juvenile idiopathic arthritis from diagnosis at age 9 to using a power wheelchair starting at age 16 to now
  • 3:25 - 10:40: What is ableism, and how does it relate to other forms of descrimination such as racism or sexism?
  • 10:40 - 17:51 - What is health privilege?
  • 17:51 - 24:30 - What is internalized ableism and how might it manifest in a person with chronic illness?
  • 24:30 - 30:00 - How to dismantle internalized ableism: disentangling worth from productivity, not being ashamed to use mobility aids or daily living aids
  • 30:00 - 34:50 - How Lene is not “wheelchair bound” but in fact a wheelchair is liberating and a helpful tool for everyday life
  • 34:50 - 41:00 - The social model of disability and how external barriers are often more limiting to quality of life than the disability itself
  • 41:00 - 46:50: The differences between living with an invisible versus visible disability
  • 46:50 - 48:10: TRIGGER WARNING (suicide): Brief discussion of assisted suicide as it relates to disability
  • 48:10 - 52:50 - How the tropes of disabled people in media (movies, books) are often incredibly over simplified
  • 52:50 - 55:30: What does it mean to have a “dynamic disability” with fluctuating symptoms?
  • 55:30 - endUniversal design versus accessibility

Speaker Bios:

Lene (pronounced Lena) is an award-winning writer and rheumatoid arthritis advocate living in Toronto, Canada. Born and raised in Denmark, Lene has had autoimmune arthritis since childhood and has used a power wheelchair since her teens. She has a Masters Degree in Social Work and writes books about living well with RA and other types of chronic illness. Lene shares her home with a cat and too many books.

Cheryl Crow is an occupational therapist who has lived with rheumatoid arthritis for seventeen years. Her life passion is helping others with rheumatoid arthritis figure out how to live a full life despite arthritis, by developing tools to navigate physical, emotional and social challenges. She formed the educational company Arthritis Life in 2019 after seeing a huge need for more engaging, accessible, and (dare I say) FUN patient education and self-management resources.

Episode Sponsor

Rheumatoid Arthritis Roadmap, a self-paced online course Cheryl created that teaches you how to confidently manage your physical, social and emotional life with rheumatoid arthritis.

For full episode links and show notes:

Go to the Arthritis Life website at: www.MyArthritisLife.Net

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