Debates about service dogs and #TheDress reveal lingering social attitudes about invisible disabilities


Invisible disabilities are not immediately apparent – if ever apparent – when meeting someone. Invisible disabilities can be confusing. Without the traditional indicators of disability such as a wheelchair, cane or hearing aids, it can be hard to accurately judge based on appearance.

Invisible disabilities can range from debilitating pain to social disabilities, mental health issues and hearing or vision impairments. People living with chronic pain, color blindness or autism see, hear and feel the world differently than others, yet many of us make judgments about ability and experience based on our expectations of what disability “looks like.”

Disability can present in a variety of ways, so don’t judge based on appearance and take the time to challenge stereotypes. Yes, Maltipoos can be service dogs, #TheDress is black and blue, and invisible disabilities are real. #challengewhatyouknow


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AIM Independent Living Center is a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping individuals with disabilities lead independent lives. AIM promotes an inclusive community by offering supports and services to people with disabilities, their families and friends, and the businesses that serve them.

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