Right, lets get straight to it, no beating around the bush and taking the theme of this article, no talking to third parties. I’m sure many of you (and I include myself) have been in a situation where you are out with someone – say in a shop or cafe and instead of being spoken to yourself, the shop or cafe assistant talks through your friend to see what you want. Its the old ‘does they take sugar’ thing.

Its annoying, its frustrating and why on earth does it happen? Well, it goes beyond sain reasoning, but its one of those occurances in life that really do need to change.

Essentially, people do become scared, embarrassed and tend to freeze when faced with something they cannot handle. On many occasions throughout my life, I have been faced with riddiculous situations that could have been easily resolved if the person concerned had spoken to me directly. I remember at college once, a fellow student was going to lend me some source material for an assignment. however, instead of talking to me about it, he went up to soemone else in the class and explained to them about it and to tell me what it was all about. They in turn went to another classmate and did the same. Talk about chinese whispers – goodness sake I could have read war and peace in less time than it took for the message and information to come around. Apaprently, the original person was scared to talk to me in case he upset me. Hmm, who do you think was the one who was worried of being upset.

The issue is, visual impairment should not be a barrier to communication, to sensible conversation and most of all to respecting the person who cannot see well or at all. From time to time, it does tend to cause a barrier; a shield that is purely made up of incorrect assumptions, fear and yes I dare say it ignorance. We’re as individual as anybody else; try talking to us not to your fears.