As wheelchairs become more available and more affordable, more and more people who have trouble walking or standing are opting to use a wheelchair as their primary mobility aid. The following are some important tips to keep in mind when interacting with a wheelchair user, whether it is a stranger or a friend.
Bend down and talk to them
Theres no need to crouch down and talk to them, they aren't children. It's kinda awkward also.
Talk to the person rather than the wheelchair user
Wheelchair user can talk, don't assume they can't talk and just talk to the person that is around them.
Take a picture without permission
They aren't weird, just because they are special doesn't mean you need to take photo. Or even though you never met a person with wheelchair, don't take photo of them too, unless they permits.
Grabbing their chair/pushing without asking
Their wheelchair is a part of their body, or an extension of their body. You wouldn't grab a person by the arm or lift them up just to move from one location to the other.
Not letting them entry
All venues and activities should be accessible and inclusive to all. Just because they are in a wheelchair, doesn't mean they can't do everything. They still have the freedom to try everything.
Guessing condition why the person in wheelchair
This action is consider very rude to them. They have their own condition, or maybe some traumatic moment they don't want to recall and say it to a total stranger.
"What's wrong with you"
You probaly are curious about their condition, but just start with a more polite one by saying "I'm just curious, but why are you in a wheelchair?"
"My brother's friend cousin's father nephew is in a wheelchair,did you know them?"
They really don't care. What are they supposed to do after knowing them?
"Can you have sex?"
There's a time and place for these kind of conversation, and not to mention you are talking to wheelchair user. Will you ask someone this question directly in public?
"I'd kill myself if i was in a wheelchair"
Never ever say this to them. They are in a wheelchair just because they need it, not they want it.
"Dont drink and drive"
Just as you know, some of them can actually drive and have a license too. They earn the license fair and square so don't treat them like they can't drive. And its not funny to make jokes about them 'driving' wheelchair.
Just remember they are humans too, even though you are curious about how they live, ask them politely. Hope you guys have an idea on how to interact with them by now, every thing start with your own manners and action.