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This blogger's open letter to a woman who shamed her for using a disabled toilet is going viral

“It’s an embarrassing enough thing to deal with before having to see disapproving looks or hear your laughs and jeering remarks”.

Image: SoBadAss

SAMANTHA CLEASBY DOESN’T use a wheelchair, nor does she have any visible issues with her arms or legs. This may have been the reason a woman tutted at her when she went to use a disabled toilet recently.

But what the woman didn’t know, is that Cleasby was diagnosed with inflammatory bowel disease in 2003, and had a colectomy and illeostomy in 2013. As a result, she had no colon, uses a colostomy bag, and sometimes has to rush to any available toilet.

So TLC UK are airing a show tonight called #toouglyforlove featuring people with #scars #ostomies #amputees and #burns - they are pretty much the anti so bad ass!!! Screw you #TLCUK you think I'm #toouglyforlove ? I don't think so... Source: samcleasby

The recent encounter of a woman tutting at her for using the disabled facilities prompted the blogger to write and open letter on her website, So Bad Ass, which is now going viral as a strong lesson in calling judgement.

Dear lady who loudly tutted at me using the disabled loos,
I know you saw me running in, with my able bodied legs and all. You saw me opening the door with my two working arms. You saw me without a wheelchair. Without any visible sign of disability.
You tutted loudly as I rattled the handle with my hands that work perfectly and my able voice call to my kids that I’d be out in just a minute.

She goes on to say that she presumes the woman assumed she was a ‘lazy cow’ or an ‘inconsiderate bitch’ using something she wasn’t entitled to.

The fact is that I have no bowel. I have a pouch formed from my small intestine which can’t handle volume and so I have to go to the toilet and poo several times a day. My lack of large intestine means that my stool is totally liquid as I have no means of absorbing the fluids in food and so its really hard to hold it when I need to go.
I sometimes have accidents which means a large toilet that has a sink right by me means I can clean myself up when things go awry.

Cleasby says she doesn’t like having to use the disabled toilets, due to dealing with such incidents as this.

Rosy cheeks and big hair Source: samcleasby

She also points out that a supermarket worker laughed at the noise she made in the cubicle, but she gets it, “since I had a pouch made from my small intestine because my disease ridden colon was removed during surgery, the noise I make when I defecate is hilariously loud. It’s comedic in it’s volume”.

But before you ran outside the loos and called to your friend “OH MY GOD! You should hear the noise in there!!! I wouldn’t go in if I was you!!!!” Perhaps you could have noted my daughter who was waiting outside with our trolley because her mum had had to leave her stranded to run to the toilet. Perhaps you could have stopped and heard me sobbing with pain because the acid in my stools has no way to be neutralised because I don’t have a large intestine and so opening my bowels actually burns my skin.

“Perhaps you both could have shown a little empathy, a little compassion, a little understanding”, she finishes up. ”Poo is funny. Disability is confusing. But humanity and care for fellow human beings is a choice”.

Take a moment. Remember that not all people who have the right to use disabled toilets are in a wheelchair. Some of us have a jpouch, a lot of us have an Ostomy bag that needs emptying and changing with the use of space, a sink and a bin. And even more of us just don’t want to shit our pants in public. It’s an embarrassing enough thing to deal with before having to see disapproving looks or hear your laughs and jeering remarks.

Read the whole letter over on So Bad Ass.

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