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To ask people to show a little more understanding to those not wearing masks

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Fuckinellitsme Wed 15-Jul-20 09:20:20

Apologies for another mask thread.

First of all, I'm not an 'anti masker', I absolutely see the need and the importance of wearing them. I'm unable to wear one myself - I have trigeminal neuralgia and when I've tried to wear one, the resulting attack has left me bedbound for days. I want to wear one, but I can't. I also have rheumatoid arthritis so I'm incredibly grateful to all the people who do wear masks, therefore protecting others and especially those in higher risk groups (though not vulnerable enough to be shielding) like me.

However. I've seen some truly awful comments on here in the last few days directed at those who don't wear masks. We should be treated like lepers if we enter a shop without one, for example, or should be banned from them outright. And we ought to stay at home if we are exempt, not use public transport or go shopping or go to work. We have 'made up' health issues and disabilities and are 'woe is me' 'snowflakes'. I've also encountered bus passengers passing comment and tutting about my lack of mask.

Those of us who can't wear a mask (and are acting within the law/guidelines, being exempt) still need to go about our business. It would be lovely if we could do so without fear of comment or judgement. I understand that there will be those who don't wear a mask because they just don't want to - however, please, if you see someone without a mask (particularly if they're wearing a sunflower/exempt lanyard) try to be understanding and give them the benefit of the doubt.

The nastiness and ableist comments on here (and elsewhere) in the past few days have been genuinely upsetting for those of us unable to wear masks. Please don't assume we're all stupid/selfish/conspiracy theorists/don't care about your health, or that it's a choice. For many, choice doesn't come into it.

A bit of empathy goes a long way, especially in these weird times.

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GoshHashana Wed 15-Jul-20 09:29:55

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blurpityblurp Wed 15-Jul-20 09:34:50

Yes, it’s awful.

The problem is masks have become politicised and the hard of thinking have tried to turn them into a civil rights issue. There are also a lot of very bizarre and deranged conspiracy theories about them. Look at the number of MN threads insisting that masks are a government control mechanism and dangerous, when in reality it’s just a little bit of cloth that 90% of people can wear with only mild discomfort, that we need to grow up and wear for a short time because it will save thousands of lives and end the pandemic sooner.

The tiny number of people who genuinely can’t wear one are being thrown under a bus by those with an agenda to politicise a health crisis.

piscean10 Wed 15-Jul-20 09:38:21

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PablosHoney Wed 15-Jul-20 09:38:34

I think yanbu, this pandemic has really brought out the amateur enforcers!

PablosHoney Wed 15-Jul-20 09:39:11

Oh stay at home, that’s helpful 😂😂😂

Gatehouse77 Wed 15-Jul-20 09:41:17

With freedoms come choice.

In the Asian countries that have previous experience of SARS and Avian flu I doubt there are exemptions as they don’t have a choice. Which is why, overall, they’ve done better at containing C-19.

I will wear a mask where I’m asked to because it’s part of being a functioning member of society. I don’t have to like it or even agree with it, like so many other rules/laws.

Lweji Wed 15-Jul-20 09:43:49

Could you wear a face shield?
Even one of those that hang from a hat?

Clytemnestra2 Wed 15-Jul-20 09:44:38

Then use your initiative! Find a visor, face shield or whatever that does work for you. The onus is on you to find a solution that works. Quite frankly, covering your face in whatever way is the least uncomfortable for you is a tiny price to pay.

Many people’s lives have changed horribly and severely over the past few months. Numbers of hungry malnourished children have rose massively in UK, spikes in domestic abuse, countless jobs lost... If one thing we can all do to get things a bit more normal is covering your face - then do it!

Hearhoovesthinkzebras Wed 15-Jul-20 09:44:45

PablosHoney

Oh stay at home, that’s helpful 😂😂😂

That's exactly what's being said on here countless times a day about the elderly and vulnerable though. Apparently we should all stay at home and let those who want to just carry on as though nothings happening.

As you say "that's helpful".

PablosHoney Wed 15-Jul-20 09:44:51

They introduced it in the first place 😂😂😂

Fuckinellitsme Wed 15-Jul-20 09:45:09

piscean10

I'm not in the UK right now but back home everyone is wearing a mask. That is the law. You will be fined/imprisoned if you are caught without wearing one in public. There are face shields and other sorts of alternatives.
It seems like on MN almost every person has a special need /issue that exempts them from wearing a mask. How do you think the rest of the world is coping with the exact same issues /needs?
Stay at home then if you cannot comply. Kids here are wearing masks from 3yo for a full day.

I can't wear a face shield or any kind of face covering for the same reason I can't wear a scarf/hood in winter. TN is triggered by a light breeze, putting make-up on, chewing, touching the face, even my hair brushing on my cheek. For some people there genuinely is no solution.

I don't know which country you're referring to where you're fined/imprisoned for not wearing a face covering with no exception. Every country I've heard of allows for exemptions, including the UK. Because even our crap government understands that for some, there are genuine reasons why wearing masks isn't possible, and throwing someone in jail because they're disabled/have a health condition is quite rightly frowned upon.

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blurpityblurp Wed 15-Jul-20 09:45:20

Most countries have laws protecting the rights of disabled people. Even in countries where “everyone wears one” I bet anything there are still individuals who are medically/legally exempt.

If all the people who can medically wear a mask wore one, it wouldn’t matter that the minority who can’t aren’t wearing one.

Fuckinellitsme Wed 15-Jul-20 09:46:38

Clytemnestra2

Then use your initiative! Find a visor, face shield or whatever that does work for you. The onus is on you to find a solution that works. Quite frankly, covering your face in whatever way is the least uncomfortable for you is a tiny price to pay.

Many people’s lives have changed horribly and severely over the past few months. Numbers of hungry malnourished children have rose massively in UK, spikes in domestic abuse, countless jobs lost... If one thing we can all do to get things a bit more normal is covering your face - then do it!

There is no 'comfortable' option. Some people are exempt, I'm not sure why people can't understand this.

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Hearhoovesthinkzebras Wed 15-Jul-20 09:47:32

Op, a face shield stands away from your face. Nothing touches it at all. Is that not an option?

Lweji Wed 15-Jul-20 09:47:33

OP, most people are not familiar with your condition and you could have explained what it is, if you didn't want replies saying to just wear them.

Trigeminal neuralgia is a chronic pain condition that affects the trigeminal nerve, which carries sensation from your face to your brain. If you have trigeminal neuralgia, even mild stimulation of your face — such as from brushing your teeth or putting on makeup — may trigger a jolt of excruciating pain.

Fuckinellitsme Wed 15-Jul-20 09:48:10

GoshHashana

*Those of us who can't wear a mask*

Nope.

This is the sort of mealy-mouthed "whataboutery" that has got us into this mess in the first place. It's not about you.

I didn't say it was. But there are millions of people in the UK who live with disabilities and do not need the censure of others when they're just going about their business.

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Topseyt Wed 15-Jul-20 09:48:17

I don't think you are being at all unreasonable. You have the exemption badge or lanyard and that should be all there is to it.

Before any arsehole decides to jump on me from a very great height, I will be a mask wearer. Two new ones I have ordered are due for delivery today (reusable) and I have a small packet of disposable ones should they be needed in the meantime.

I do, however, understand that for some people wearing a mask could be a very real problem and I don't wish to judge them or behave like an arse.

blurpityblurp Wed 15-Jul-20 09:48:32

In the Asian countries that have previous experience of SARS and Avian flu I doubt there are exemptions as they don’t have a choice.

In most of those countries, mask-wearing is a habit which is widely followed due to social conditioning, and is not a legal requirement at all.

PablosHoney Wed 15-Jul-20 09:48:34

I don’t agree with it for the elderly and vulnerable either. I don’t particularly want to wear a mask but I will and the small percentage of people that can’t will be nominal.

timeisnotaline Wed 15-Jul-20 09:49:32

I agree with others that I would expect people who legitimately can’t wear a mask such as yourself to go ok well I’d better try something, what about those face shield things?
People who can’t wear a mask and just go oh well that’s it for me - that is a bit poor and makes it very hard to tell the difference between genuine ‘can’t’ and the many ‘I’m too special / it’s a degradation of my basic humans rights right up there with denying me access to food and water’ .

PablosHoney Wed 15-Jul-20 09:49:38

My father in law has the same condition OP you have my massive sympathy.

Fuckinellitsme Wed 15-Jul-20 09:50:01

Hearhoovesthinkzebras

Op, a face shield stands away from your face. Nothing touches it at all. Is that not an option?

A face shield/visor exerts pressure right in the area of the trigeminal nerve so sadly not. Any pressure, however slight, on the face/head can set it off.

I'd love to wear a face covering, but it's not an option for me - and for many others too.

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NotEverythingIsBlackandWhite Wed 15-Jul-20 09:52:31

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sbhydrogen Wed 15-Jul-20 09:52:39

When I moan, I'm aiming my moaning towards the "wearing a mask is an infringement of my human rights" and/or "covid is a hoax" lot (even if don't make that obvious in my posts).

If you literally can't wear a mask, then you shouldn't have to, but there should be a bit of paperwork to stop you from being fined when the mandatory mask rule comes into effect.

I think you may have posted about your TN in another thread some time ago, and I had never heard of it nor knew it was a thing.

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