Knowing what other people go through in life is easy, because it is matter of listening, reading, watch and sometime witnessing their experiences. Although experiencing other people’s feelings is almost impossible, one can learn and understand what others are going through by trying to ‘walk in their shoes.’ There are so many activities that can bring out this feeling in one, regardless of whether you have certain special abilities or not.
For instance, trying to understand how it feels to be older becomes a reality gradually one grows older, or to understand how it feels like to be a father, mother, husband, or a wife can only become real when one bears the responsibilities associated with each. The same case applies to experiencing what individuals who are disabled, for example blind feel.
Although states like being blind, homeless, insane, or poor may never happen to many individuals, it is good to understand how individuals in this state feel, in order to be able to associate and treat them with respect. This essay will discuss ways in which one can learn and understand how it feels to be blind.
How It Feels to Be Blind
The main purpose of walking in someone else’s shoes is building empathy. It should be noted that building empathy depends on the different situations and experiences of the persons who you want to share their experiences. When an individual is blind, such an individual naturally feel a sense of detachment, curiosity, frustration and skepticism, because of the discomforts and challenges, which are associated with their situation.
Hence, to be able to experience what these individuals to, it is important to have a sense of involvement and empathy. For example to experience the psychological state of being blind, individuals should try to close their eyes and assume they are blind.
After assuming this, they should try to do thing as if they are blind, as this is one of the ways of experiencing the kind of difficulties that blind individuals go through as they try to execute their daily duties. Through this, many can realize that, they have no clues of so many things, more so the intangible ones that need the sense of sight. For instance, explaining to a blind person about different colors and how the sun looks like is very hard.
As research studies show, most blind people have visionary experiences when they are awake and asleep, but they do not leave any reference point of perceiving them – there cannot say it looks like something. Hence, for them, they do not know whether things they hear of exist in reality.
Such is the case because they use the power of imagination through what they feel, smell, hear and taste. Hence, by closing eyes and trying to perform some things, individuals will experience the same and learn to appreciate and help any blind person (Foley p 1).
In addition to this, individuals can involve themselves in games that involve blindfolding each other and trying to locate objects or identify other people using their voices. Through failing to execute these duties, individuals will lean the kind of difficulties, which blind people go through, more so when it comes to using their simple Godly given perceptions to make sense of their world.
On the other hand, individuals should interact with these blind individuals in order to understand how to manage their lives. This is important, because firsthand experience will make one to hear the reality of things from the “horse’s mouth”; hence, enhance the development of healthy relationships.
In conclusion, to “walk in somebody’s shoes”, individuals must endeavor to involve themselves in activities, which will give them an opportunity of feeling or experiencing what individuals with such disabilities feel. For example, although one cannot fully experience the hardships that are associated with blindness, closing eyes and trying to do their normal duties, one can somewhat feel what it feels like to be blind.
Foley, Kate. The Blind Child and Its Development. Future Reflections, 28.2 (2009). Web. 7th Oct. 2011.