4 June 2018
I have a disability so when I first started uni, I gave careful thought to things. Here are my tips for other students with disabilities who are preparing to leave home.
For many, leaving home can be daunting: fending for yourself, making important choices and becoming almost completely independent. Be it if you are moving in to your own home, living with a partner, or going to university, leaving the family home can be a challenge. But add on top of that being disabled, then leaving your parents’ house can be all the more terrifying.
As a disabled youth you tend to have to think more carefully about things. For one person spontaneously spending the night away from home is just a quick text to your parents, to a disabled person it is making sure you have your medications, you have enough equipment and all your treatments are with you, making sure you actually can sleep in the place assigned to you. Spontaneity and disabilities, added to the antics and excitement of being young, can sometimes end up not being a good look. So when you add moving out and being in charge of your own healthcare into the equation it can sometimes lead to a rough patch until you find your feet.
For many, the first time they leave the family home will be university. Whether you are moving in to halls or renting somewhere, chances are that you will be in a new place away from your family. If you are like me, and your primary caregiver is a family member, you should always try to learn the things they do for you before leaving – whether it's so you can do them for yourself or teach someone else to do it for you. This might consist of administrating medication, physiotherapy or breathing techniques it is always important to know what they do to help you so you can help yourself. It will be a lot harder to learn over the phone at three in the morning when you don't know what to do...