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what have we done... - Carers UK Forum

what have we done...

Share information, support and advice on all aspects of caring.
132 posts
Interesting topic Audrey, I've been following the other one closely.

Others don't understand because they've not been in that situation, I've always maintained if they took up the caring role for a week they'd not last the full week.
Where is the original thread?
original thread on carer to carer 'all right for some'
I think it is just that, a lack of understanding, so I guess general education is a good way forward... but I know, it's easier said than done. I think if the authorities admitted how hard we work and how much they rely on us to do their job then they'd also have to admit, to us and to everyone else, how much they underpay and undervalue us all.

In my experience, when dealing with new people, I try to pre-empt any form of undervaluing by meeting them with an "I'm working a full time job that is just as important as yours" attitude. It doesn't always work, but it has helped some of the time. If anyone asks what I do, I try to say confidently "I'm a professional carer" and let them deal with their own prejudices. As for people we see regularly, I guess a 'wear them down' approach is the only way I can think of.
But realistically, these will of course not work a lot of the time, but they help sometimes. People get me grumpy sometimes....
As a carer of a person with Downs I have found that people just show their prejudice toward people with LD. That is " you poor thing" type of attitude. A few years ago I made a complaint to a quango that was co ordinating projects on this island. I told them I was a carer and sister of a Downs lady and felt we had been discriminated aginst by our local development trust. The response by "Initiative at the Edge" was a denial and " I am sorry for your UNFORTUNATE family" ! As my husband is a high paid, high ranking professional and my son a decorated war hero I can only presume the twit concerned thought having a family member with DS was unfortunate. I e mailed him back and told him to examine his own prejudices.
Do we shout and holler? Depends on the impact it will have on our caree. I could be on every front page because of a terrible incident that happened 6 years ago. I was violently sexually attacked in my own front garden and the police didn't even bother to turn up. Worse still they prosecuted me for damaging the sicko's car- I had to protect my sister at all costs. I only give out crap when I know it won't affect her. I think we all do that it- that's why we are carers- protectors and defenders. We all know the people who make life difficult but if we shout out they could make life more difficult. It's bullying, pure and simple.
the perception of carers is often very wide of the mark.but then,as with most judgements made by others,on myth,ill-informed and half-baked foundations,prejudice,biggotry,or the many other nasty traits we human beings use to label our fellow beings,as we know,unless and untill we are in the plight of carer or caree,we aint got a clue!.Family,freinds etc often are unable to grasp the issues faced by carers and the careed-for.That aint going to change,sorry.Best we might hope for is a fairly passive absence of interest,better then contempt,perhaps?.
No1 mum and Maxi make the observation that those who have been or are carers have some real understanding. But even in that situation some people let their own prejudices cloud their judgement. I have had other carers look at me with contempt because we are financially comfortable- even better off carers have to face the general prejudice that society maintains against the disabled. I have had some carers say to me " it's alright for you".
That's a bit like us, Lady (I refuse to think of you as a Dragon, you're surely not xxxxxx) - we live in a large 5 bedroom boogaloo, with a large garden, 2 cars, have 24 hour assistants ...... soooooo, my life as a carer can't be that bad, right?
It doesn't matter how well off or not you are, a carer is a carer with all the stress and responsiblities (and gawd how the responsibilities go on and on and on and on). Just because I live in a large place, with help? doesn't make me any the less a carer.
Even after my carer's assessment interview, it was like, 'oh, you've got help, that's all right then'. End of story as far as they're concerned.
We all know it's not as easy as that. It's a real pity that the so-called professionals DO NOT.
132 posts