A STUDENT who suffers from a condition that causes her joints to dislocate up to 40 times a day was shocked to find a note on her car branding her ‘vile’.
The callous letter was stuck on the windscreen of Theresa Summerfield’s parked car at the University of Wolverhampton.
It read: “I don’t know who’s [sic] disability parking badge you are using but it’s not yours!
“You should be disgusted in yourself. One day I hope you know what it is like to be disabled, then you will know.
“Parking in a disability space is not fair and you are a vile woman abusing parking for the infirm.
“I hope you rot in hell!”
Theresa, 27, has had Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome (EDS) since birth but the symptoms became more painful after she suffered a mini stroke at 20.
Since then she has had to rely on crutches and a wheelchair – though she has tried to be independent of these after being hurled abuse in the street.
The PHD student also has Crohns disease so she has on-sets of severe stomach cramps and pains in addition to her joints popping out.
Theresa’s shoulder can detach while she is combing her hair, ribs pop out at a cough, while knees, hips and ankles click out of place if she walks for too long.
She said: “I was initially really angry when I saw the note and then I felt really sorry for the person.
“Trying so hard to not appear disabled due to hurtful comments and try to live a normal life is hard, I was really hurt by it.”
She then posted a response to the messenger’s note online: “I use disabled parking bays with MY blue badge because I NEED to.
“I may be able to walk into my office, or a shop, but I never know what’s going to dislocate next.
“I don’t know if it will take me an hour to walk a few hundred yards to my car because, yet again, something’s popped out.
“Next time you want to call someone ‘vile’ I suggest you take a good long look in a mirror, where you will surely see a vile person.
“I am not particularly angry with you.
“I pity you for your obvious ignorance and intolerance of others.
“I sincerely hope you never become disabled, because, unlike you, I wouldn’t wish this on anybody.
“Now I’m going back to my life.
“A life filled with love and support but also dedication, passion, and ambition.
“You will always be ignorant, but I will be a success.”
This isn’t the first time Theresa has been subjected to comments about her walking aides.
She has been accused of using her crutches for show to avoid working or to claim benefits.
“You can’t judge just by looking at people – it’s so hard being younger as well because people claim I’m on crutches as an excuse not to work,” Theresa continued.
“I have always worked, people just assume.”
Theresa’s husband was also angry about the note she received.
He said: “I was just completely shocked, if they could spend just a minute in her body they would be rushing to A&E in pain needing painkillers that don’t work. It makes me sick.”
After completing her PHD, Theresa is planning to pursue a career as a lecturer in cyber psychology which researches how people behave online.