Letter to the Editor: It’s a chronic illness, it’s not contagious!
Date Posted: February 5, 2015
I was sitting at one of the computers in the college’s library. I had tried to get a computer far off in the corner in hopes of seclusion, but as the minutes passed by, more and more students piled in, occupying my personal space.
An older man who must had been in his late twenties or early thirties came in with a loud, cocky, and arrogant mouth and sat right across from me. Great.
But I fished out my headphones and turned on my music in hopes of drowning out everyone’s chatters and gossip. For a while it worked – I sat quietly and continued working on the essay I should’ve started weeks ago.
Occasionally, I’d hear one of the man’s voiced remarks and outbursts. I just rolled my eyes and turned up the volume, trying not to lose concentration.
Finishing up my final edits, I raised my right hand to my face to brush away a few loose strands of hair that had been poking my eye when I heard his loud, sarcastic voice again, “What the hell’s wrong with your hand!? “
Reacting quickly, I hid my hand under the table, pulling down the sleeve of my sweater. Glancing up under my eyelashes, I saw that he was staring at me along with everyone else who had heard his question.
I muttered to him that I had Crohn’s Disease, my skin lesions being one of the side effects.
“Oh. I thought you had like, a fungal infection or something.”
Did he have to be so loud?
Balling up my fists and taking deep breaths, I logged off the computer, packed up my stuff, and bolted from the library with tears stinging my eyes and my head hanging in utter embarrassment.
It is sad, yet expected, that this kind of behaviour of disrespect and arrogance continues today.