The social pain of strabismus

I’ve not experienced the social pain of strabismus that so many have known. Most of my life, I could control my eye drifts to some degree. But I hear many stories from people who are hurting because they feel so rejected.

I received a comment today from an adult who is having an especially hard time with self esteem and rejection. She had posted to an instructional page in this blog. I’m creating this new post and will move her comment to this post instead. I will let her know where I’ve moved it.

For those who don’t have turned eyes, I encourage you to make a special effort to reach out when you see someone who does. These people are precious. I wish I had better answers of how to help. But I think just knowing you accept them for who they are, being a friend to them, and inviting them into your life and social events, will go a long way.

Comments are welcome.

57 thoughts on “The social pain of strabismus”

  1. Laurent, I am sorry you are having to experience this. You will find others who experience what you are struggling with in our Eyes Apart strabismus support group at Yahoo. If you’d like to check us out or join our group, click the purple button at the top of this page. The group is a little slow right now because people have been busy with the holidays, but it should pick up soon.

  2. I am having a hard time navigating this site. I read some comments then lost them. My vision is too bizarre to find them out again. I too have a story, but more importantly 2 questions. 1) Why Don’t The Surgeries Last? (This is 2014 and doctors are still using the same, non-permanent method for surgery?) 2) Did anyone start out with diplopia/double vision caused by crossing and have it fixed with strab. surgery? Yes, I know it’s complicated but so are other types of surgeries. Is there a solid list of doctors whose surgeries stood the test of time yet? Please disclose. Thank you.

  3. J., I understand your difficulty reading, and especially finding things again. I struggle with that some also. There are several reasons strabismus surgery is not always permanent. For one thing, what your eyes see is based on subjective values. The doctor gives you a series of visual tests to which you verbally reply. There are some objective measurements, as he measures the angle of your eyes deviation, etc. But even this is not exact. It is a close guess, but not perfect. The decision of how much and what direction to move the muscle itself is based on a combination of objective and subjective data plus an allowance for the tendency of the eyes to return to their original state. Doctors usually move the muscle a little farther than needed because they know the eye will gradually drift back a little in the first months. Sometimes the drift continues at a much more gradual pace. Another reason it is impossible to get it perfect is that this is an extremly precise surgery where a fraction of a millimeter can make a difference, and the tendency of the eye to drift back is not the same in everyone. It is very difficult to get such a surgery perfect. I encourage you to join our Eyes Apart email support group at Yahoo for more help on this. Just click the purple box at the top.

  4. I have strabismus. When I was little I was made fun of by my peers. I got operated at 17 and they were straight enough for years. Now I am 42 and started to notice people staring again. It’s hard. I’m very angry that there are people who stare. They’re adults for crying out loud. I’m glad I found this page with people who understand.

  5. Giulia, you will find even more people who understand in our Eyes Apart support group at Yahoo. I encourage you to join that group and share your story there. I’m sure some will reach out to you. Click the purple Yahoo Groups box at the top of the sidebar to join.

  6. Am 22 and I have strabismus, alot of people have had fun of me, guys that asks me out teases me, and i dont have lots of friends because am overweight and have strabismus, it’s very painful. And if your not strong, you will have low self esteem. God knows best. Sometimes i feel am ugly and i may not get married because no one wants to marry a girl with misaligned eyes.

  7. Eleanor, you are not alone. You will find others who suffer the same problems in our Eyes Apart email support group at Yahoo. Click the purple button in the sidebar to check it out of join. Share your story and others who also suffer with this will reach out to you.

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