Monday, May 7, 2012


Having a visual impairment does not just affect your every day life but also your relationships.

I had been in a long term relationship and was diagnosed with Stargardt's Disease. This had a huge impact. I had to pretty much change my whole life plan. Not only that, I started making rash decisions as I was afraid of what the future would hold.

It takes time to accept diagnosis, and I feel as though I am coming closer to total acceptance. Instead of jumping to conclusions and seeing my condition negatively I have started looking at it in a positive light and all the things I still can achieve, and being legally blind will make it that much more special.

My relationship broke down and I feel as though my condition did play a part in that. I now have fears as to "who would want to be with someone with my baggage". Possibly I have watched too much Jerry Springer 'Excess Baggage' but it always stays in the back of your mind.

I know it sounds silly and there are amazing people in the world but the doubt always hangs over. It's just another way that Stargardt's has affected my life and I'm sure others lives as well.


  1. Hello, I am 27 and have had stargartz since I was 11. I can understand your feelings about the disease and I too had a hard time over coming the issue. And YES you're absolutely correct that it affects many things in your life and relationships. You will learn to figure out ways to help deal with it and not allow stargartz to control you. Instead you will control it! Relationships will come and go but honesty about your condition will go a long way. I've tried to hide it in the past and typically ends up in termoil. But if someone doesn't want to be with you because of an eye condition then that is not the person you need in your life to begin with. Jennifer and I are perfectly happy and she fully understands what I can and can't see. She picks me up from work, reads the menu, etc. Don't give up and always understand that you could be much worse off. There's always a reason for something like this. For example....I have a hard time reading. On the other hand. I can play classical guitar, bass and piano at a professional level. Just cause one of your senses is limited is no excuse to expariment with other things. If you ever need someone to talk to. Let me know. Best Regards

  2. Don't worry. You'll just be fine. Like all of us have been. I think it is difficult to understand SD in the early phase when we are still trying to do everything like normal people or rather holding on to "normal behavior". I've lost all my central vision. And the news, I can still do everything. I always worried that I wouldn't be independent one day because of SD. I didn't know that I would be able to adapt :-) My reading speed is three times slower than normal people, but as a translator I am twice more efficient than my colleagues ("normal people").

    I have come across a lot of people with SD, all of them are overachievers.

    If someone left you because of SD, I think they didn't deserve to be with you anyway. You're stronger than them to live a tough life everyday without losing courage. Sometimes even small activities like finding a can of wild salmon in a supermarket seems a gargantuesque task. And at the end of the day, it is you who has to continuously deal with adaptation, not your partner. They should be proud of you. And they seem to be carrying a "bigger baggage" if they broke up with you because of SD! Get them an appointment with a shrink :)

  3. Thank you both you have made me smile!! I love that people with SD are oveerachievers. I definately fit into that category!!

    It's so amazing you play all those instruments! I've recently started playing the piano again but I'm struggling to read the notes. I'm not giving up though!

  4. You actually lucked out, most 'blind people'.. actually, every blind person I have met to date, which is quite a few, are really ugly. You on the other hand, are hot. Unless you are hiding behind a picture of some really hot model posing on a mountain somewhere, then finding a boyfriend (or girlfriend if thats your thing ha) will be a piece of cake. Its not like you have the baggae of an alcaholic, or schizophrenic, or a convicted fellon. He just has to drive you everywhere and read the menus when you go out. There is even positives to not being able to see past your hand, you cant check out other guys,which eliminates the jealousy insecurity in a relationship.

  5. Hahahahaha Kyle you have absolutley cracked me up!!!!!! Too funny!!!!

  6. I agree! If someone cant be supportive then they're not the person to be spending the rest of your life with.

    My girlfriends has had Stargardts for several years now and while it is tough for her, facings the daily challenges together is what makes us stronger together.

    I also agree with the comments here about people using this as motivation to over achieve too! Through my girlfriends support groups we have met some very talented and clever people with Stargardt's who have excelled in what they put their mind too. My girlfriend has not let the disease stop her living her dreams;
    - in 2009 she got to the last 12 girls in the X-Factor!
    - Today she is a professional singer
    - and she is also a professional artist too

    I'm so proud of her :-)

    Hope everything works out perfect for everyone on here!

    Best regards,