Just Diagnosed Legally Blind

I was diagnosed in mid-September as legally blind due to acute macular neuroretinopathy. I am 21 and had to quit my job and drop my college classes. I don't know where to go or what to do now. I'd like to return to class as soon as possible. I need some help on the steps to take toward getting my life back on track.

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Re: Just Diagnosed Legally Blind

Hi there, i really feel for you! Actually i really hope that you feel okay emotionally, it may be really difficult cuz when this happened to me i remember to be really pissed off, nervous, and always kept saying that this isn't fair. I;m sure that you're going to return to classed and to work, just keep believing in this and everything will be okay!

Re: Just Diagnosed Legally Blind

Hi Miss Scarlet,
Thank you for reaching out – please do take heart, you can get back on track with your studies and career. You sound determined to find solutions and this is half the battle – being willing to try new things when we have to find a way around the obstacle.
I am a peer advisor like Audrey and lost most of my sight at 17 and have managed to train in several careers.
Like Audrey suggested above, it is important to actively seek Vision rehabilitation services in your state as these professionals can inform you of your choices as well as guide you to other useful resources, especially for re-training in getting around independently and learning how to use assistive technology and gadgets that can help you in your continued studies.
Apart from the links Audrey provided, you may also find another part of the AFB very useful, called CareerConnect, LINK:

CareerConnect helps new job seekers and students who are blind or visually impaired explore careers and find mentors.
The AFB book store also has a new book called College Bound: A Guide for Students with Visual Impairments by Ellen Trief. A friend or family member may be able to read this with you, for more details see:

I hope you feel you have several avenues to explore and do get back in touch if you require our further support.
All the best,

Re: Just Diagnosed Legally Blind

Miss Scarlet- please do not despair! There are some important steps to take after a diagnosis like this. If you go to the homepage of www.visionaware.org you will find helpful information and a roadmap To getting the services you will need. My name is Audrey and I am a peer advisor for this website. I have a degenerative eye disease called retinitis pigmentosa and was also diagnosed in my 20s. I went on to work a career in nursing for 30 years! You will need to contact the vocational rehabilitation services in your state. You will also need to have a low vision evaluation with a specialist who can recommend tools, training, and technologies that will enable you to be independent and
work a job. Check out the directory of services on the vision of where website to find agencies and organizations who work with the visually impaired in your area. Ask them if they have any support groups that you can attend. You will learn a wealth of information from others who are living with vision loss in a support group. With the right training and attitude, you can live the life you want and work a meaningful career... you will be able to do more than you think you can right now! You have taken the first step by reaching out and asking for help. If you would like to talk directly with me via email you can contact me at amdemmitt@gmail.com I wish you all the best in this new journey!

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