It baffles me that so many people who feed their dogs nothing but biscuits look at me like I’ve just dribbled down my chin when I say I feed my dog raw food. Dogs are literally designed to eat raw food not dry biscuits made from a brand that cages animals to test food on them anyway
This is a post predominantly for the people with invisible illnesses, but I suppose can extend to anyone with unsupportive people in their lives. You encounter a great deal of opposition to your service dog when people can’t see disability from both strangers and people close to you.
Making the decision to get a service dog takes so much time and consideration. We all know the questions we ask ourselves:
Can I handle the attention is public?
Is it worth packing him up and taking him everywhere?
Am I willing to make the sacrifices it takes to have a service dog and adopt a new normal?
Will it be a net positive for me
What will my friends and family say?
That last question is a kicker.
When I chose to apply for Earl, my genteel Southern family exploded. The best way I can recount their reactions to hearing the news is through another of my beloved bulleted lists:
“Okay…. Well…… What do you want me to say?”
“So you’re just giving up on getting better?”
“Don’t you want to be normal?”
“You’re being selfish. There are people in worse shape than you who need service dogs.”
“You’re just exaggerating your seizures so you can take a dog everywhere.”
“Just keep trying to get better and get a normal dog.”
“Are you still talking about getting a service dog? I thought we talked you out of that months ago.”
The list goes on. They even called the agency after I put in the application with two references and a doctor’s note confirming my disability to tell them I didn’t need a service dog. Just a side note- I’m 24. They’ve grown to love Earl, but still pet him when he’s vested and make comments like, “Oh, you brought your dog again.”
Even my supportive friends didn’t act the same for a while. Until they adjusted, it was a little lonely. Conversation was strained and brief. I became reclusive. Then I got creative. I started using social media and texting for interaction for a while with the people I was closest to. Then would meet them for a meal or coffee because Earl sleeps quietly under the table at restaurants. People forget he’s there. It felt like old times and it helped them realized I am the same person I was before Earl came along.
*That was long. Sorry about that. Here’s the advice part (another bulleted list):
Your service dog is for YOU. Be okay with and unapologetic about that.
Try to help the people you love understand and be prepared for them not to.
When trying to reconnect with people who may feel uneasy about your new “buddy,” Try to hang out with them and at all costs try to avoid talking about your illness for a while. They care, but it’s a good reminder that you’re the same person you were before. They probably miss you as much as you miss them.
Try to be comfortable in your own skin. Remind yourself that you’re not defined by your illness. You just need a little extra help. You’ll exude that confidence and people will be more at ease around you and your service dog.
fic prompt: broom conservatory au, Alex goes on a shopping run
Alex sits in her lap the entire drive to the store. Eliza shouldn’t let him do that — even if he can’t wear a seatbelt, him nuzzling at her stomach is distracting — but he looked so pathetic when John left for the airport, and she can’t deny him his small comforts. She places him in the child’s seat of the cart, and he curls up, resting his chin on the handle.
A clerk stops her in the cereal aisle. “I’m sorry? Miss? We don’t allow pets in the store.”
Alex bristles. “He’s not a pet,” Eliza says.
The clerk gives her a skeptical look.
“He’s a…” faerie, pianist, boyfriend “… service animal.”
“Is it even legal to own a fox in this state?” The clerk shakes his head. “Whatever. Next time put a service vest on him. And maybe a leash.”
Alex hisses as the guy walks away.
Eliza strokes his fur. “He might have a point. We could at least get you a collar, so people don’t think you’re a wild animal.”
A baleful glare. She can hear him saying, I am a wild creature.
“Well, yes. But would you rather explain the truth?” She tosses a box of Pop-Tarts into the cart. “Besides, I think you’d look nice in a black leather collar.”
He geckles. Behind her, a woman coughs and whispers “excuse me,” reaching for the breakfast bars. Eliza blushes and hurries to the next aisle to get rice. She’s thinking curry for dinner: quick, simple, and familiar. A nice first-time dinner in their new home. Which — oh, maybe she’ll add shrimp? She turns the cart toward the seafood section.
Alex sits up in the cart as they get closer, ears perked and whiskers twitching. He stares at the case of fresh fish and licks his lips.
“Alexander,” Eliza says, warning-tone.
“Can I help you?” the clerk behind the counter asks. She gives Alex a dubious look.
Eliza flashes her sweetest smile. She’s becoming like Alexander, she thinks, using charm to deflect human curiosity. “How much for a pound of shrimp?”
The woman rattles off a price. Eliza hums, considering. She could get more chicken for the same price, but then it’s just her and Alex this weekend. John is in Seattle doing a concert, even though he should be here with them, celebrating their move-in and eating curry and helping her line the windowsills with salt. Then again, she could freeze the extras and have lunch for the next week…
Distracted, she almost misses Alex leaping out of the cart.
Eliza grabs him by the scruff. He wails, a hideous noise that the whole store must be able to hear, and thrashes in her grip. She wrestles him back into the cart, keeping a hand on his neck. He wriggles and screeches, teeth snapping at air.
“Are pets allowed in the store?” the clerk yells over him.
“Service animal!” She’s already pushing the cart away with her elbows.
Forget shrimp, she’ll use tofu.
Alex doesn’t shut up until they reach the dairy aisle, where Eliza opens the package of Pop-Tarts one-handed and gives him a pastry. Then he hunkers down to gnaw on it, making churlish growls around mouthfuls of frosted strawberry. She grabs the tofu and soy milk and goes straight to checkout. She’ll come back alone, later, for the other things she wanted.
The kid working checkout coos at Alex. “He’s cute! And he likes sweets?”
“Oh, yeah, he’s got a real sweet tooth.” Eliza swipes her card.
“Cash back?” They lean over the counter. “And can I pet him?”
“Sure.” Alex is preening, so she figures he won’t nip. The kid climbs up onto the conveyor belt and reaches down to stroke Alex’s back. He purrs, arching into the touch. “No cash back,” Eliza adds.
She wrestles the groceries into the car, and Alex scrambles into the passenger seat, curling up into a tight ball. He sulks on the ride home.
“You really miss John, don’t you?”
“But I’m still here.”
He buries his face in his tail.
She rolls her eyes. “Fine, be like that.”
He’s no help with the groceries in this form — she could swear he turns into a fox to get out of chores, sometimes — so she hauls the bags up the stairs to their apartment, him trotting ahead of her. He disappears under the couch once they’re inside, and she busies herself organizing the fridge and prepping ingredients for curry. Chopping vegetables takes the edge off her irritation; she hums along to her favorite playlist.
Something soft brushes against her bare leg. She looks down to see Alex rubbing his face on her calves. He turns those big dark eyes on her and gives an apologetic geckle. You’re here, I’m here, please?
Sometimes Eliza wonders whether she really understands him, or if she’s making concessions.
A little eccentricity was fine, she
had worked for the royal family (and alongside their other retainers) for a
long time. She became quite familiar with some of the more colorful
personalities in Hoshido. Oboro herself was guilty of having a few quirks. When
she first laid eyes on Corrin, the blue-haired woman had some suspicions that
he was a little odd. When Oboro had her first extended conversation with
Corrin, those suspicions were validated.
Corrin tended to be a bit blunt, he
would ask a very personal question before realizing it. Perhaps because of
this, another of Corrin’s quirks was that he would apologize at the drop of a
hat. She and Hinata once had a drinking game over how many times Corrin could
say ‘I’m so sorry’ in one day. Perhaps the cause of this would be his other
quirk: the fact that Corrin was optimistic to a fault. While by no means a
fool, he was usually the last person to think a bad thought about anybody. A
little eccentricity didn’t bother Oboro, and she found something strangely
endearing about just how odd Corrin could be. But when it came to Corrin’s
18, 17, 15, 14, 13, 12 Also sorry for having every number there going backwards except 16
12) 3 deal breakers in a relationship
Mm aaaaa any physical/verbal violence and uhh idk if they only talk to me when they want shit from me those were past issues
13) what is one thing you’ll never do again
Lie about my affections
14) whats your most bizarre pet peeve
When people try to force me into a convo I don’t want to talk about
15) what is your favorite memory
Skateboarding a mile away so I could still get enough service to talk to my favs during the aftermath of hurricane Matthew
17) what ‘small things’ things terrify you
People being bored of me
When you I am Super Excited about something and it is dismissed
18) do you like your laugh
19) have you ever stalked someone/been stalked
Yeah i have had a couple stalkers
I always have that customer who comes in and orders something and then when they get their price they complain that they always get the same thing and its never that expensive or at the other store its cheaper. Then I have to show them how its charged and explain that its been the same way for 2 years and yet they still get pissed.
There's a video going around of Linda Sarsour saying that in America, antisemitism is bad on an individual level, but it's not systemic because white Jewish Americans "can still get services at a government agency" and so on. What would you say to her and others like her who think antisemitism in 21st century America is not systemic?
Sadly, many people lately like to play the ‘oppression game’. While it is clear that some religions, races, genders, and sexualities have more privilege than others, it is not productive to play this game. In order to make the world a better place, we must work to bring people up, not bring them down.
In general, Linda Sarsour is a very charged character in the Jewish world. While many Jews regard her highly, many see her as the epitome of evil. I believe that where she has done some incredible work in some cases, she struggles with understanding many of the issues behind antisemitism. Due to her clouded, right-wing judgment on the Israel-Palestinian conflict (where she only sees the Palestinians as legitimate), her political actions and opinions on antisemitism are also skewed.
I hope that she one day will understand that the only solution to the Conflict is through understanding the many different Israeli and Palestinian narratives in the region. Only then, will her understanding of antisemitism be extremely clear.