Your argument is a little contradictory; the social model talks about all the social experiences which are different for some of us because of some bodily, neurological, cognitive, psychological or other difference. This has nothing to do with a diagnosis, or a particular type of barrier, so long as it is societal in nature.
In the same way, being white or a person of colour is not to do with a specific skin tone or set of genes, but to do with the way that other people treat you; if you can pass for white, then you have one experience, if you are regarded as being "racially" other, you have another sort of experience.
Therefore, according to the social model, you are disabled the minute that other people regard you as being disabled for whatever reason that might be.
The Goldfish is quite right that there is a contradiction here, and this is how I see it: If we are disabled because other people think so, then disability really isn’t so much about barriers in social structure as it is about attitudes. And if it’s about attitudes, then we’re right back to the medical model of disability because it’s the medical profession (for the most part) that is responsible for creating society’s attitudes about who has a disability.
Will someone please explain to me how there is any significant difference between the following two statements?
(1) You are disabled because you have been diagnosed with a medically defined condition;
(2) You are disabled because society thinks that everyone in your diagnostic category is disabled.
This looks to me like it’s almost entirely a semantic difference; in either case, the end result is the same—medical professionals have the ultimate authority to sort people into “disabled” and “normal” categories.
I tend to view disability more from a political perspective—that is, as an alliance among people who are affected by disability prejudice, regardless of whether they face complex barriers in social structure or just plain old-fashioned bigotry. As The Goldfish’s comment suggests, such a political alliance can be compared to joint efforts by racial minorities to challenge discrimination based on race. It’s not a distinct group in itself, but a means for bringing about political change. Such cooperative advocacy can be a very effective means of dealing with specific discriminatory situations, such as the recent Ransom Notes ads; but I don’t think it can be fully effective in putting an end to disability prejudice without also challenging the authority of medical professionals to define people as disabled.