We learn that the narrator has never met a blind person. He says the idea of Robert's disability bothers him. Rather than accepting Robert, he is made uncomfortable by his disability. He is fixated on the blindness and ironically can't "see" beyond that as he thinks about this man:
And his being blind bothered me. My idea of blindness came from the movies. In the movies, the blind moved slowly and never laughed. Sometimes they were led by seeing eye dogs. A blind man in my house was not something I looked forward to.
Again, as he ruminates on the fact that Robert could never see his wife, Beulah, we notice how fixated the narrator is on outward appearances. To him, they are all important, and he misses the depths of the relationship:
And then I found myself thinking what a pitiful life this woman must have led. Imagine a woman who could never see herself as she was seen in the eyes of her loved one. A woman who could go on day after day and never receive the smallest compliment from her...
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