October 24, 2012

October is Dwarfism Awareness Month


You may not know that October is Dwarfism Awareness Month. The LPA (Little People of America) initiated the plan to declare October Dwarfism Awareness Month in hopes to raise positive awareness around dwarfism, address common misconceptions, and increase opportunities for people with dwarfism around the country. Dwarfism occurs in 1/10,000 births. There are still many adversities little people face today.


With my bro who calls me "big little sis" since I am older but have been shorter than him since he was like 7
Me with some new friends at the Nashville LPA Convention in 2010

Facts about my dwarfism:
  • I have Spondyloepiphyseal Dysplasia (say that 3 times real fast) which is a genetic disorder that affects bone growth and causes curvature of the spine.
  • Like 80% of most dwarves, I was born of average height parents. I am the only little person in my family history. 
  • I can pass it on to my child. If I have a child with an average height person then it's 50/50 chance for being a little person. If I have a child with another little person then the chances increase.
  • I've had 11 corrective surgeries in my lifetime (I'm 27 now) with more to come. I'm already dealing with early stages of arthritis which will only get worse with age. Many LPs including SEDs have hip replacement surgery in their early 30s. We never really stop having surgeries unfortunately.
  • I stopped growing in the 5th grade. I was 3'11" but had surgery to straighten my legs in high school so I gained an inch! At 4 feet, my nephews are sure to be taller than me by kindergarten. 
Some misnomers:
  • Just because you're under 5 feet, it doesn't mean you are a little person. You can call yourself short but being a little person isn't only about being short. One of my pet peeves! Being medically classified a little person or dwarf carries a lot of medical burdens that most average people don't face.
  • The word midget is NOT okay. The word is derogatory and should never be used lightly (as much as I love Stefon). There are many other terms to use to be more politically correct: little person, dwarf, short-stature. 
Buzzfeed recently featured an article about the issues little people face during dating. I've only dated average sized people because that's what I have available to me. Although I live in Manhattan with 8+ million residents, I don't know any other little people. It is extremely difficult for little people to date each other since we tend to have long-distance relationships.

Some helpful facts:

Fact sheet via LPA Facebook page

Hopefully I was able to educate you about dwarfism since many people don't understand or have the wrong information. If you know any single little people dudes, I'm available!

26 comments:

  1. that was a very interesting read! thanks for enlightening me just a little bit more! and thanks for being so open & honest :)

    have a great day :)

    Amy @ Interpret As You May

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    1. Thank you for reading :) Glad you learned something!

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  2. Thanks so much for sharing this! I didn't realize how much of an education I needed but now I feel like I have properly had one :)

    Kate

    www.thrillofthechaise.com

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    1. Aww glad I could share some knowledge with ya :)

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  3. Thanks for the information Kimberlee, you are so fab! and yes, we need to find you a hot little people dude who lives on manhattan! ;)

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    1. Aw thanks :) haha I know, where are they hiding?!

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  4. Great post educating us on dwarfism. Knowledge is power.

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  5. Great post! I watched (and loved) "Little People, Big World" which did a great job educating me about dwarfism, I honestly didn't know much about the different types before watching. There has to be awesome LP dude in NYC for you! There's a cute LP guy that works at the Jimmy John's I go to here in Augusta, but Augusta is too far away from you :o(

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    Replies
    1. Aw well if he's open to moving to New York, then send him my way! Jen and Bill from The Little Couple were like a 1,000 miles apart when they met and then moved near each other, which seems to be the common thing. But I'm not leaving NYC so he has to come to me haha :p

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  6. I really liked reading this. It was great to learn about something that I knew very little about.

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  7. I am really glad you shared this. I'm sure you will find the right dude very soon :)

    xo Mary Jo

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  8. i had no idea there was a dwarfism month
    thanks for bringing it to our attention
    brett

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    Replies
    1. It's fairly new... first was recognized in New York. California recognized it this year along with a few other states.

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  9. Thanks for sharing this! I would be interested to read your thoughts as a little person in fashion, social media, etc., especially how you find/tailor clothing to fit your body. You are so stylish! : )

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    1. Well I pretty much share all my thoughts here. I go to a typical, local tailor. I'm in Manhattan so there are lots of great ones. I can fit in to most off the rack tops, tend to shop the petite section mostly. Then for pants, I get them all hemmed but otherwise they fit. I know some other LPs struggle to have clothes fit because our body types are all different.

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  10. this is so informative. thanks so much.


    Ps; Join my Glamour: Making it Modern book Giveaway [US ONLY] on Style Diaries



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  11. I really loved this post, Kim! Thank you so much for writing it. I think it would be really awesome if you made posts like these into a blog series!

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  12. This is why I love blogging! See, here I am, new to your blog, and would have no idea that you are a LP. I think the post was great. I watched small people big world too and was blown away by how much more it is than being "little" like you said. Thanks for sharing!

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  13. Thanks for sharing! What a great way to spread awareness :)
    ~GirlGotGlitter

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  14. I love how your're letting people know about dwarfism awareness. A lot of people don't know. I just recently had a niece born with dwarfism. She's had surgery at a month old and is now 4 months old.

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