I live in a part of London not well-served by accessible public transport. My commute would take over two hours each way and involve three buses, as no local tube stations are accessible. Trying to get on a bus as a wheelchair user in rush hour - especially when so many have unreliable ramps - is often an impossible task.
Today is World Consumer Rights Day. But since this awareness day started back in 1983, there has been a group of consumers that are continually overlooked. That group is disabled consumers, and while the Government puts their spending power at over £200billion a year, rarely are goods and services developed with them in mind.
I'm lucky. I'm happily partnered up with someone who looks at me a bit oddly when I suggest that my disability might have put him off me. But it's true that lots of people feel uncomfortable even talking to disabled people, let alone thinking about dating them - let alone thinking about (whisper it!) sex with them.
This month marks the 20th anniversary of the Disability Discrimination Act - a landmark piece of legislation that was the result of a hard-fought campaign by disabled people. For the first time, the Disability Discrimination Act made it unlawful to discriminate against disabled people as employees and as consumers.
The more people try not to speak about someone's disability or difference, the more they'll end up stumbling - and it's very obvious to that person what's going on. And they won't be offended! I don't mind somebody acknowledging my height or talking about dwarfism. To be honest, if they're curious or inquisitive, I'd rather we did chat about it.
It doesn't take much to make a real difference to the lives of many. While we all lead increasingly busy lives, we should not forget the privileges we have. Let's take advantage of the benefits we have in our lives and assist those less fortunate than ourselves. It needn't cost us a thing but the payoff is unimaginably huge.
I found the statistics really shocking, but mostly as they seem to be totally opposite to my own experience. I was born disabled, and became a wheelchair user at the age of fifteen, yet I can honestly say I have never had any trouble making friends, being invited to social situations or finding love.
I have cerebral palsy but I've never let it hold me back. Growing up, I was bullied but I quickly learnt not to back down... A bruise will heal, a cut will heal, but when you let someone take away who you are, it's more damaging than any broken bone and deeper than any cut. By standing up for myself, people no longer just saw my disability. It shouldn't define you. I just happen to have CP.
I, myself, am a self confessed social networking addict. My thumb will always gravitate to the Facebook App without a moments pause and I really don't always realise that I'm browsing the feed. Is it really an awful habit? I'm not convinced either way just yet, but I did believe that 48 hours without it might be torture. I'm happy to report, I was wrong.
I think able bodied people are in denial about their thoughts and feelings towards us - they don't want to deal with the thought process, so they shut it out. Well, we are here! And with medical advances and people living longer, there are only going to be more of us! So maybe it's time for people to start coming to terms with their feelings about disability.