Navigating body image as a person with disabilities and visible scars is a unique journey that often intertwines physical appearance with personal identity. External markers, mobility aids, or scars, become parts of our narrative, shaping the way we are perceived by others and the way we perceive ourselves.
While essential, medical devices can introduce another layer of societal scrutiny. The challenge lies not in the devices, tubes, or lines themselves but in the societal gaze and internal thoughts that tend to focus on the visible aspects of disability.
Also, addressing malnutrition or severe bloating can complicate one’s perception of body image due to weight fluctuations. The situation is further exacerbated when medical professionals comment on weight changes, drawing attention to it than usual and potentially fostering feelings of shame.
Loving your body is important, yet sometimes it can be hard to live this out when your body doesn’t work or look how you want it to. I’m working to deemphasize physical appearance and hope you will too.
Ultimately, the journey of body image as disabled individuals is unique for each person.