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Aisling Glynn with Gina, her assistance dog: “I was away for a few days with my family over Christmas. We rented a house in Kerry near the sea. I rented an electric bed and a hoist. There was no phone reception. That was an added bonus – until the last night.”

What makes someone disabled? What makes me disabled? Surely it’s the wheelchair? A weekly column by writers with a disability. I was(...)

Ferdia MacAonghusa: “Illness is something you carry, that you live with however you can. It’s a part of who you are, and being at war with a part of yourself is pretty damn uncomfortable.”

In hospital the first time, a social worker came into my room. I was 16, in a children’s ward – too tall for all the beds and frankly freaked out. My (...)

“There was a time when disabled people’s sexuality was deemed dangerous – a universal taboo.” Photograph: iStock

Recently, in the company of five women with various impairments, all of different ages, there was an acknowledgement among us that our underwear was l(...)

Louise Bruton: “My tee-shirts, jumpers, jackets and coats regularly fall victim to being covered in bobbly bits of wool as the friction between the seat of my wheelchair and my arms, shoulders and back causes them to wear down.” Photograph: Dave Meehan

When you start using a wheelchair, there’s a number of things your doctors and nurses can’t tell you. The things you pick up from the lived-in experie(...)

John Cradden at the Deaf Village Ireland. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

I was up in our attic space at home a few weeks ago when I stumbled on a box of old press clippings from my long and, eh, distinguished journalistic c(...)

Bobbie Hickey: “I have been walking into school before and had parents stop with their kids and turn them away from me and hustle them on quickly, as if they had just seen a ghost.” Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Hello friends and Merry Christmas! My name is Bobbie Hickey and I am 19 years old, born and raised in Dublin, but go between my family home, my colleg(...)

I was writing an ad for a personal assistant last week. As I typed the words “personal assistant”, I found myself hitting the back space key. I typed (...)

Ferdia MacAonghusa: “When I’m at my lowest, I feel a desperate, suffocating sense of being trapped in a ‘bad’ life.”

As I was getting off a bus yesterday (“Warning, wheelchair ramp opening”), I felt a tap on my shoulder. A woman with close-cropped hair and a slightly(...)

The Abbey and Peacock theatres in Dublin.   “That profound, awkward ignominy of introducing someone new to your cultural capital is excruciating.” Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

As wheelchair users we had to make a decision. Either to go in the back entrance of The Gate or go in the main entrance of The Abbey. Both options mea(...)

 Louise Bruton: “There’s a huge lack of specialised mental health services that are inclusive of disabled people.” Photograph: Dave Meehan

It’s often said that when you’re feeling down, asking for help is the first and, sometimes, scariest step. If you are looking beyond the help of frien(...)

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