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AFBAmerican Foundation®
for the Blind

Expanding possibilities for people with vision loss

Rejection of assistive technology

My dtr is 15y.o. going on 30, if you know what I mean. She has low vision-plays JV soccer, hockey and track at school but is not doing well academically. She has an aide, TVI. O&M, CCTV, glasses with attached teloscopic lense, etc. She is not accepting of these services and as a result her grades reflect it. She is very smart, but is not working to her potential. Teens, can you relate? What can I do to help her help herself? Thanks

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Re:Rejection of assistive technology

Oh god yeah! I can not focus at all sometimes, but I am totally blind anyway.

Re:Rejection of assistive technology

I can relate a lot. I think that it's like working more then 100 times harder. I can't stand when sighted people try to give advice when they have no clue what it's like. I have had a lot of the same problems with mobility in school. Kids look at you like you are different. Like she said no one will understand so she doesn't talk about. Feel free to e'mail.

Re:Rejection of assistive technology

I'm fifteen as well,yes I can relate. I have ROP and have had a hard time dealing with it,untell recently I denied anything was wrong with me.I have learned to cope so well, nobody who I haven't told knows it.I like to be independant ,it's a hard thing to accept because it makes me different,and at fifteen it feels like a social death sentence to be different.Unless somebody spends a day in your shoes working 10 xs as hard as others they won't get it.I have learned though that taking advantage of my 504 plan and IEP and mobility training makes me more independent than ever,while I still don't like that I have this,I have to accept it because I wouldn't be me if I didn't.I don't tell anyone about these things though,again they wouldn't understand,but I tell myself and am able to talk to my parents about problems relating to my vision now. So I understand what she is going through if she feels like talking she can always email me at

Re:Rejection of assistive technology

Give it time. Most adolescents with problems ranging from hearing or vision loss to chronic illness go through periods where they reject their image as "broken" humans and attempt to emulate normality- one prime example is teenagers with cystic fibrosis who will go through periods of skipping medication and not watching after their health.

It passes with time. Eventually, she'll find herself faced with things she cannot do and stop being ashamed of being seen as blind or VI.

I strongly suggest having her meet with competent blind adults who are very capable and constantly using blindness tools like a long white cane and braille, who can act as role models.

Re:Rejection of assistive technology

I know how she feels. Its emberrising for a teen to have these kind of assistive technology at times. I've been mocked I can't tell you how many times for stupid little things. I used to reject a lot. I'm 15 myself and lossing vission. I now understand how much it helps me. There are two points of view. Its hard to understand them both. Your daughters point of view is this: Its emberrising and I want to be as normal as possiblie. I don't need kids making fun of me because of all this stuff! I can do it on my own. Just like any other kid. It doesn't matter how much pain I'm in or how much it affects my grades as long as I'm as "normal" as possible.
Your view: I just want my daughter to accept the help she was offered. I want her to succed and to have a good life. I want to her her yes and her to reach per potentual.
I think you understand where this would end. It would end in what happened to me. A war. A constand argument between who is right and who is wrong. The point is to find that middle ground. Parents must understand the strain put on us by school and other teens, we need to understand that this is for the better good and that it will help us in the future. You and your daughter will need to figure out that middle ground.
I hope I didn't sound like a "Know It All" and that this really helps you. Feel free to e-mail me at


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