We all gave presentations in one of our classes this week on different cultures' perceptions of disabilities. Each group presented on a different country, which included Japan, Cambodia, India, Turkey, Greece, Tunisia, Nigeria, Romania, Luxembourg, Spain, The Netherlands, the U.K., and Canada. And guess what every single country had in common? According to the study, people consistently ranked infertility as the "least disabling" condition.
The lack of understanding is a worldwide problem.
But we already knew that, didn't we?
Among my small group of readers alone we cover the United States, Canada, Slovenia, Ireland, New Zealand, and Germany at least. And we all share common experiences of being constantly misunderstood.
About two-thirds of the way through the presentations, I leaned over to my school friend and said, "It's crazy to me that every country has ranked infertility as the least disabling condition when infertility completely destroyed my life as I knew it." He agreed and said, "That's exactly what I was just thinking."
The study is old, about twenty years old, but I will make the not-so-bold statement that not much has changed in terms of people's perceptions of infertility.
People in all countries & across all cultures just don't get it.