colorwheel: six-hued colorwheel (colorwheel)
[personal profile] colorwheel posting in [community profile] accessibility_win
my cfids comes with cognitive impairment. often, a conversation becomes confusing to me during the conversation. sometimes it's because there's a reference i don't get or information i don't know, even though i'd get it or know it at another time (brain fog is intermittent). other times it's because i've just never learned that reference or that information. other times i just can't follow. it doesn't matter which of these is happening -- there's an easy, kind way people can help me to have the most possible access to the most possible rest of the conversation:

let me not understand the parts that aren't key. have that be okay, and move gracefully on. don't squeeze in an explanation just because the point seems simple to you.

if i ask you, "do i need to understand this point?", a "no" answer is a gift. don't do it falsely -- some things i DO need to grok in order to stay in the conversation, and i need your help knowing which is which. i don't know which is which, because i'm foggy and also because (obviously) i'm not the person saying things that i don't understand. the thing might be side information; it might be a cool parallel or a fascinating tangent to the main point. if i ask you, "do i need to understand that part?", i am not devaluing that part (i'd probably love it). i'm saying that for me to try to understand it right then is nontrivially hard and will use spoons at too fast a rate. and possibly crash me.

if you notice me getting confused but i haven't asked "do i need to understand this point?", you're giving me a gift if you bring it up yourself: "by any chance are you confused? this part isn't key to the main point. would you like me to skip ahead? would you like me to simpify?" that's a damn gift. it's a damn gift because, by helping me save cognitive spoons, you're giving me the most possible access to the part of our conversation that we most care about, and to whatever else we might feel like doing that day.

[i can't tell if this post makes sense outside of my head. feel free to ask questions.]

Date: 2011-07-21 08:59 pm (UTC)
jadelennox: Senora Sabasa Garcia, by Goya (Default)
From: [personal profile] jadelennox
this is a hugely important thing for me to understand. Thank you so much for this post!

Date: 2011-07-22 05:13 pm (UTC)
in_parentheses: (Default)
From: [personal profile] in_parentheses
Me too. I've wondered how to handle this but haven't wanted to ask because there can be such an implied insult in asking if somebody doesn't understand something. Thank you!

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Tips for improving accessibility from PWD

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