, 10 tweets, 3 min read Read on Twitter
I’m visually impaired & use a white cane.

I was sat on the tube putting my backpack on. Suddenly a man grabbed my bag & shoulder.

I shouted “woah! what are you doing?” I thought he was stealing my bag.

He then verbally abused me for 5 mins because he wanted to “help me”.
Me: what are you doing?! Get off.
Him: I’m helping you!
Me: don’t touch me.
Him: I saw your stick I’m helping you with your bag.
Me: I thought you were stealing it! How was I to know!
Him: this train is packed with 100 people I wanted to help you!
Me: why didn’t you ask!
Him: I was just going to help you! (His tone got increasingly aggressive by this point)
Him: this train is packed! I was going to help you.
Me: I do this every day. Don’t touch people or their possessions without ASKING!

He started muttering.
At this point a nice woman asked if I was ok. I just said how this kind of thing happens every day & I wish people would use their f-ing words before their hands.

She offered to help clear a way for me but then I realised we weren’t at my stop. So I just waited by the door. 4/
At which point the man pushed me as he got off & muttered something which sounded like “ungrateful bitch”.

I got off at my stop, made it to the ticket hall & had a tearful panic attack on a bench.

The TfL staff were lovely as ever, got me water & tissues. Listened to me. 5/
Other Half rushed over in the car to get me.

In fact he hurried out of the house so quickly he actually split his trousers right down the back 😂!

He got me home safety & I’m now in bed coming down from the panic attack. 6/
This is why I rarely ever respond when strangers touch me.

I take the violation of my consent & physical boundaries, because if I dare object I get an aggressive lecture on how ungrateful I am.

Today I had just reached a limited & needed to stand up for myself & my body. 7/
Tonight I will use my self care & therapy techniques to prevent my PTSD spiralling out of control.

But tomorrow I have to get on the tube again & put up with the next stranger touching me.

So please share this thread so people can learn to #JustAskDontGrab disabled people. 8/8
This man became aggressive because I didn’t want him to touch me.

However this isn’t an isolated incident, I experience this a lot.

As do many other disabled women. I have started a new project collecting their stories, please read them & share them ⬇️
Polite respectful offers of help are always welcome. Please always ask before you touch a disabled person. #JustAskDontGrab

If you want tips on how to offer help to disabled people out and about I’ve written a guide in this blog post.
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