Series: Common Blind Questions

Picture of Amie Hynes Fitzpatrick and Stuart Lawler holding an iPhone

Being a naturally curious person, questions are always on the tip of my tongue and I also love when people ask me questions!

A lot of people tell me they’re afraid of being inappropriate , but from this VIP’s perspective having the chats is the only way to break down barriers and increase awareness!

I’ve been asked everything from, how do you get dressed to how do you know if someone is good looking!

So to get us started on busting some myths,here are some common VIP Questions and some maybe not so common but honest answers!

Q 1. Do blind people dream?

A 1. I think what people are trying to figure out here is whether or not our dreams are visual. The honest answer is yes and no. Everyone definitely has dreams, how they present themselves might vary. It’s all relative, my dreams are still visual, they are often in Irish as well.

Emoji cartoon of Amie VIP sleeping and dreaming

I guess it depends on the person and their upbringing.

Q 2. Can blind people use mobile phones and computers?

A 2. Absolutely! Shortly after I was diagnosed with Stargardt’s I met Stuart Lawler the Godfather of Technology! Stuart showed me some of the bells and whistles associated with being Tech Savvy, saying “Technology is the Greatest Equaliser for Blind and Vision Impaired people”.

A person wearing over sized glasses sitting in front of a laptop #geek

Mobile devices havein-built accessibility features like magnification and voice over. Computers are a little different, Apple has in-built accessibility features (magnification & voice over), Steve Jobbs wanted to create a product for everyone and thankfully he remembered the VIP’s of the world when Apple was born. For those of us who are not iGod’s you generally have to buy assistive software like jaws or zoom text.

Microsoft logo versus Apple logo

I’m definitely not the expert on this so I caught up with Stuart Lawler to chat all things mobile devices and accessibility. You can watch the video below.

Q 3. How should I speak to someone who is blind or vision impaired?

A 3. Without sounding flippant, the same way you speak to anyone else. Announce yourself when entering a room or conversation. Don’t forget to say when you’re leaving – there’s nothing worse than rambling on for five minutes only to realise the person has done an Elvis and left the building.

Picture of Elvis leaving the building

Don’t be afraid to use common phrases like “Great to see you” or “See you later”. And the most important nugget you need to take away is this, if you are not sure how to address someone – use their name!

Click here to watch a handy video on communications and disability.

If you’ve any questions you would like answered, comment below, between myself and all the amazing VIP’s out there, we will be able to answer your questions.

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