My particular disabilities put me in a sort of in-between spot in airports. I can walk, so given unlimited time and places to sit and rest along the way, I can get to and from my gates without wheelchair assistance. The problem is that I'll end up a puddle of oxygen-depleted mush. If the physical drain on the average non-disabled person navigating an airport is a 6 or 7 on a 1 to 10 scale ... tiring and unpleasant to be sure ... for me it's like 12. However, when I do ask for wheelchair assistance or ride one of those electric carts, my effort goes down to something like 3. So technically, it is easier for me than it is for most others when I use assistance. It's just that it would be much greater if I didn't.
That's not true for every person with a disability in every situation, but I think it is true for quite a few of us. Which is partly why we sometimes feel guilty about taking assistance or using disability accommodations, even though we shouldn't feel bad about it at all.
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