Sherry advises people to work a bit harder to inform themselves and understand before they make assumptions about people with hidden disabilities.
Sherry Bartholomew: For those of us who have a hidden disability like mental illness, we get told, “Just think happy thoughts.” Well, you know, it doesn't work that way, it's an actual chemical imbalance.
Host: This is Keep Moving Forward.
George H.W. Bush: Let the shameful wall of exclusion finally come tumbling down.
Host: Exploring the legacy and promise of the Americans with Disabilities Act.
Sherry Bartholomew: My name is Sherry. I'm bipolar, have ADHD borderline personality disorder and PTSD. Having a mental health disability, people don't see it, so people don't understand it. The more we are open about them, the more they're going to be understood.
What I'd like is to open that dialogue. If you see someone who's struggling, who looks like they're differently abled, ask them if they need assistance. Don't assume that they need assistance, because maybe they want to do it on their own. Ask, “What would it take for us to include you?” Also, do your own research. Learn more. Include us. Inform yourself. Ask us questions. Start a conversation. Those will all get us closer to that holy grail of equality.
Host: Keep Moving Forward is supported by The Minnesota Council on Disability, The Minnesota Humanities Center and the Minnesota Arts & Cultural Heritage Fund, online at Ampers.org.
Over the Back Fence is a community variety show that takes place the 2nd Friday of every month from March through November, with a different theme each performance. The entertainment takes place in the Historic St. Mane Theatre in Lanesboro MN. Your acting company is comprised of volunteers, set to make you laugh, sing-along and have a great time with music, comedy, skits and special guests! This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a Minnesota State Arts Board Operating Support grant, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund.