Why It’s So Important to Listen & Empathize With Our Clients

Why It’s So Important to Listen & Empathize With Our Clients

At the most basic level, a disability is a disruption. Those who develop a condition in their adulthood can suddenly find themselves struggling with everyday tasks, and are physically or mentally unable to do as much as they did when they were younger. It can be incredibly demoralizing to be forced to confront those limitations, and no one feels that more acutely than the person wading through a to-do list that never seems to get any smaller.

Unfortunately, many bystanders are simply unwilling or unable to empathize with that struggle. They have no broader understanding of someone else’s medical condition beyond the narrow impact that it has on their own life. As a result, they won’t offer their assistance, but will instead focus on results. They’ll notice the things that haven’t been done, with little regard for the things that are done and the amount of effort required to make it to that point.  

Those kinds of reactions are most obvious in the workplace, but they are also exhibited by those who would normally be expected to offer their support, including close friends and family members. For people with disabilities, that lack of compassion is often one of the most crushing aspects of dealing with a severe medical condition. Once they get a handle on their symptoms, they often end up feeling abandoned by the very people they expected to rely on during a crisis.     

This social stigma and the feeling of isolation can be far more overwhelming than the disability itself. Obstacles that are manageable for a team become far more challenging when they have to be tackled alone, and while there are resources available to those with disabilities, many of the people who try to access them will leave feeling disillusioned with a dispassionate system.

For example, insurance companies and employers will usually try to avoid paying a long term disability claim even though they have an explicit framework to provide financial assistance. By the same token, overworked doctors and professional caregivers can be remarkably cold towards individual patients, a reality that is at odds with the typical depiction of compassion.

Of course, many people do receive the help they need and have a positive experience with the system. The point is that the lack of structural, financial, and social support can exacerbate the mental and physical symptoms of a disability, and those situations occur with alarming frequency. People with disabilities often feel like they’re at the whims of a bureaucratic machine that doesn’t seem overly concerned with the humanity of the people trapped inside.

That’s why it can be so transformative when someone does take the time to listen. At Share Lawyers, we see clients who have been rejected, and who often feel invisible to those around them. In addition to fighting for our clients’ disability benefits after they have been denied, we always want to build strong relationships with our clients to make sure that they feel both seen and understood.

Everyone’s experiences are valid, and everyone deserves to be acknowledged. We know that that kind of validation can be vital for anyone dealing with social isolation. 


Has your long-term disability claim been denied? Contact Share Lawyers and put our experience to work for you. We have recently settled cases against Great-West Life, Desjardins, Manulife, RBC Insurance, Sun Life, and many more. We offer free consultations and there are no fees unless we win your case. Find out if you have a disability case.