A mistake I see a lot of writers who write about disability make is asking only one person for help. I’ve heard so many people say things like, “I have a cousin who is blind, and she read the book and said it was good at portraying blindness.”
I’ve never written fiction about living with Crohn’s, and to be honest, I’ve never wanted to. Perhaps because I still feel what I felt for years growing up: that nobody wants to hear about my annoying, humiliating misery. Yet I know, intellectually, that this is a shame, because there should be more characters in YA literature who live with chronic illnesses like IBD.
The two or three months I managed to get by on the reduced dose were enough to convince me: My psychiatrist is lying. I don’t need medication. I’m fine. I can beat this. Until, of course, I couldn’t.
With one word, one look, it hit me that my experience really was abnormal.