Misconception is defined as a mistaken notion about something or someone. Disability is lack of ability to handle a certain responsibility in the manner that is expected for a normal person. Some forms of disabilities are either permanent or just transitory in nature. Most of the time, people have been limited to handle some challenging situations due to different disabilities.
Illness is a status of having poor health due to several reasons that include poor diets, infections, or genes (Wagner 123). It is normal for human beings to fall ill in the course of their lives. There are forms of illnesses that are minor, while others are serious, and requires one to be hospitalized. The bodies of human beings are capable of fighting simple illnesses, while others require one to seek for medical attention.
There are several myths and misperceptions concerning disabilities and some illnesses among various people in the society. For instance, some people have a perception that disability is a ruining personal tragedy. The truth about the disabled people is that, their lives are not tragic.
Disability cannot really be conceived as a ruining factor in one`s life because, people acquire it mostly through attitudes and the environment that they live and work in (Beauttah 203). Another misperception about disability is that most deaf people can lip-read. This is a misperception because for a deaf person to communicate effectively, he or she should be provided with sign language interpreters or lip speakers for audience to understand what they are saying.
According to some of the information provided by researchers concerning the disabled, people tend to think that the disabled are unable to have relationships. This is false because just like non-disabled persons, they have the ability to make personal choices about whom they would like to spend their future with. Countless disabled people have managed long-term relationships and have their own children.
In addition, there is a misperception that disability is interrelated with illness. This is evident that just like any other normal person, the disabled are prone to illnesses in the same manner. Not unless they are helped, the disabled cannot do anything on their own, to some extent, disabled people would sometimes require to be assisted on some matters due to their inadequacy. Some things may be too complex for disabled people to handle, hence the reason that they need to be assisted (Beauttah 210).
However, they are not always dependent as they also strive to be independent to keep their lives moving. Sometimes, it is not the fault of people to place such misperceptions about disability and illnesses, but it is what they found their fore fathers saying and they also believed. Some of these misperceptions are cleared by education, as people are still acquiring knowledge on why some things happen in life.
There is a group of people that believe that the disabled are very courageous in their actions and in their ways of approaching issues. Every individual has his or her own way of coping up with life, especially when faced with challenges.
Disabled people likewise, have the same potential like the non-disabled in ways of coping up with life, and they are not in any manner exceptional (Wagner 187). Unless someone has some mental disability, any other type of disability does not deny an individual such a capability nor does it add anything to the courage of that person.
Disabled people are uneducable; this is also another misperception of some people. Several studies have proved that disabled people have the same academic abilities just like any other normal person. This is proved by the availability of disabled people in the world with high qualifications, and some others taking care of high-level jobs.
The worst and most common type of misperception is that students with disabilities are not intelligent. The presence of the word disability brings the idea of such students not able to learn. The fact that the word disable implies not able, makes people to create a very negative perception about those people who are disabled.
The fact about these people is that they can learn, but in a different way. Mostly in our cultural context, people define and classify intelligence depending on the academic performances of an individual (Wagner 105). Just because people with disability perform poorly in school, does not mean that they are not intelligent.
Most of such people have demonstrated some excellent skills and abilities, but unfortunately, such skills are not tested in school. When given an opportunity and some form of encouragement, people with disability can prove to be intelligent in some other fields though not necessarily in school work.
Moreover, most of people have a serious misperception about mental illness. This has resulted to patients who suffer from such disorders be afraid to seek for assistance because of fear of stigmatization. Religious sectors have the biggest percentage of people with misperception of such illness (Wagner 90).
Some people claim mental disorders to be because of one being possessed with demons, or rather a punishment from God. The media has tried a great deal to change and shape the misperceptions of such people, by making them understand that such an illness is just like any other disorder.
There are so many misperception about illness that have been there for a long time, but the spread of knowledge through education, media and other aspects, people are becoming enlightened. Most of parents who have disabled children have suffered a great deal due to stigmatization brought about by misperceptions.
For instance, some people insult such parents by telling them that their children are suffering due to poor parenting. Such parents even fear to seek for treatment of their loved ones, as they also tend to believe what other people are saying. This is false because children from well up families are also victims of such illness in the same rate as children from poor families.
Moreover, those patients who suffer from mental illness, people tend to think that their disorders are because of stress (Wagner 312). To some extent, stress may trigger such conditions, but the real causes of such conditions are proved biologically. There are several patients, who do not have any history of stress, and they are later diagnosed with mental illness. People who have lived admirable lives free from stress, with good jobs and healthy families are also found suffering from mental disorders.
In conclusion, it has become a responsibility of all people with knowledge to enlighten others, who totally believe in such misperceptions (Beauttah 225). This act of judging things wrongly has caused fear and stigmatization to innocent people. Some parents are found even to keep their disabled children indoor due to stigmatization. It is the high time people stop applying these misperceptions in the real life and work on the reality.
Beauttah, Trender. Myths and Misperceptions of Mental Illness. New York: Routledge, 2008. Print.
Wagner, James. Myths and Misperceptions on Disability. Michigan: Cengage Learning, 2006. Print.