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Fibromyalgia Mum Horrified By Note On Windscreen After Parking In Tesco Disabled Bay

May 6, 2015

A mum who battles chronic pain and used a disabled parking space in Tesco found a note on her car saying ‘being fat and ugly doesn’t count as disabled – park elsewhere’.

PhD student Sarah Metcalfe, 35, suffers from fibromyalgia, a long-term condition that causes severe pain all over her body.

The York mum-of-one has now branded the perpetrator a ‘Katie Hopkins-wannabe’, who is happy to spread hate without thinking.

Sarah had parked in a disabled bay through fear of not being able to make it round the supermarket with her 13-year-old son Jack.

Upon discovering the note, Jack was reduced to tears – and was left trying to convince his mum that she was not ‘fat and ugly’.

Sarah has now called on the person who left the note to come forward so she can discuss ‘invisible disabilities’ with them.

Sarah said: “Both me and Jack were devastated to find the note. I think they must have seen me leaving my car with a smile on my face so assumed I wasn’t disabled or in pain.

“Yet I was just happy to be out with my son – but we were both left absolutely heartbroken to find the note, it left us both in tears. Then our hurt turned to anger.

“Now that I’ve calmed down I would still like to speak to the cowardly person behind the note to explain how not all disabilities are visible.”

Sarah suffered a serious head injury after a nasty fall five years ago and her fibromyalgia developed after this, along with chronic fatigue syndrome and dizziness.

The condition means she suffers muscle stiffness, tingling all over her arms and legs, chronic pain and dizziness and clumsiness.

However she has been so wrapped up in her studies at the University of York that she had only just got around to applying for her Blue Badge a few weeks ago and was still going through the process to prove she needs it.

Sarah said: “I don’t like to claim benefits, I like to just try and get on with it, but the pain was so bad on this occasion that I was forced to used a disabled bay to limit the walk.

“There were around 40 disabled parking bays and most were free.

“I wouldn’t have been able to go in if I hadn’t used it – my ankles had become so weak that I was worried I’d go over on them. But I was enjoying a day out with my son so was determined to make it in.

9 Comments leave one →
  1. victedy permalink
    May 6, 2015 4:34 pm

    Why is it that people have to be on crutches or in a wheelchair to need a blue badge: my [late] neighbour had heart trouble, renal failure and a catalogue of health problems. One day: someone that wanted his parking space sneered “he’s not disabled”, so incensed was my neighbour he lifted his top the show the man his dialysis [in & out tubes] and the scars from his open heart surgery. He spat back “How disabled have I got to be!!!” The man still insisted the spaces should be for disabled only [meaning unable to walk] – even though my neighbour couldn’t walk far due to heart problems. The fact that my neighbour is no longer alive to testimony to his disability.

  2. veilynnissa permalink
    May 6, 2015 4:35 pm

    Can’t Tesco find the monster who did this via CCTV? What is wrong with that person!

  3. May 6, 2015 4:58 pm

    I feel sorry for you Sarah but as far as I am aware to use Disabled Parking Bays you have to have a Visible Blue Badge so although Disabled until you have the Badge it is illegal to Park in the Days Reserved for Disabled People although I would not have wrote such a nasty letter and put it on your Car I would have still been annoyed

  4. May 6, 2015 5:28 pm

    Reblogged this on Britain Isn't Eating and commented:
    Despite this womans pain she had no right to park in a Disabled space without having a valid Blue Badge to display.
    Often there are Parent & Child spaces allocated just as close to Disabled ones that she could have used instead

    I also think using the “she was still waiting to be blue badge approved” (I’m paraphrasing) excuse, only reinforces the publics attitude that drivers who abuse these disabled spaces by not displaying a Blue badge should be challenged, either directly (dangerous) or indirectly as in this case by leaving that note.

    I have sympathy for her condition and physical limits, but not for her attitude in using a disabled bay illegally.

    • Norma Roberts permalink
      May 7, 2015 9:49 am

      Fair enough, but, challenging does not mean calling someone fat and ugly! The person’s appearance is the not the issue one is supposed to challenge, it is the fact that they have used a disabled parking space when they do not have a valid blue badge. The note writer should have enquired as to why she was not displaying the badge, and pointed out that, if she did not have one, what she had done was illegal. In fact, it seems, that the writer of the note was not even aware she did not have a badge, otherwise they would have surely mentioned this in the note? This seems, to me, to be someone judging whether someone is disabled, or not, by appearance alone – which is actually what the post is about, not whether she had a badge or not!

      • May 7, 2015 9:55 pm

        I condoned the challenge, not the content of the note itself.
        Apologies if I didnt make that clear at the outset.

  5. marg permalink
    May 6, 2015 10:20 pm

    Have you not asked where you were parked if they had ctv just to see if you could catch on there who wrote that awful note

  6. May 7, 2015 12:40 pm

    I once went to the same store in Clifton Moor York and even though my disabled wife was with me and a person, NOT DISABLED, cut us up and took the last bay marked for disabled. so I parked right across his rear got the wife out and went into the store to do the shopping for about 20 minutes the store kept giving out the reg number of our vehicle, before I went to the customer service and told them he was guilty of dangerous driving, parking in a disabled bay without a badge and he could wait until we had finished. He called the police who told him it was a civil matter. In the end he waited over 3 hours for us to finish shopping

    • May 7, 2015 9:54 pm

      I like you style lol.

      For those of us with Blue Badges, we’ve all seen cases where drivers have parked in Disabled Bays without displaying the Badge and just toddled off seemingly without a care n the world.

      Now I more than realise there are people with “invisible disabilities” or who forget to display a badge, but the more the general public see of drivers like these using these spaces the more the general public think its ok to do so.

      Even those who think “Oh I’ll only be a minute while I go to cashpoint, I’m not hurting anyone” etc, are only perpetuating the cycle of more drivers following suit.

      Whats need is more official monitoring of these spaces by the Car Park owners/managers.
      Only once actual fines are dished out will this problem be eased for the genuine Blue Badge holders.

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