I have come to the conclusion that we don’t get dementia as we get older, it is the world that goes mad. There was a headline in the Daily Telegraph this week saying that a doctor had been sacked for refusing to call a six foot bearded man madam.
A friend of mine has her two grandchilden coming to stay for a few days next week. They are both in foster care and it has taken quite some doing to arrange them coming to stay for a few days, particularly as they are in separate places because they fight when they are together. The elder one, fifteen year old girl called Sophie has now decided that she wants to be boy called Leslie. Her name has been changed at school and with all the relevant authorities. The social workers tell me that it is their policy to be guided by the child. What is the matter with them? They’re dealing with children who are quite disturbed – how about them doing some of the guidance. That’s what these children need – someone to help them manoeuvre their way through the confusing minefield of modern life with it’s maze of weird internet sites telling children how to commit suicide or starve themselves almost to death in order to become the thinnest person on the planet. The younger of the two girls is with a ‘very experienced’ – my quote marks – foster mother. She told my friend the other day that she had just discovered that Thomasina didn’t break up until after she was supposed to be coming to stay with her! Is it completely unreasonable to imagine that someone who is acting in loco parentis – and being paid a great deal for this – should have a vague idea of term and holiday dates! The social orders have given dispensation for her to miss the last couple of days of school early as the is moving again. She is only 13 and she runs rings round social services. She is quite determined to return to her original town and school. Social Services said this wasn’t possible, but she is moving ever closer. She is self- harming and has an eating disorder – apparently she is getting help for this (the nature of this help is as yet unspecified although apparently the social worker did say that she thought it was a cry for help – who would have guessed that?)
The other morning I had one of those scam emails from some idiot who told me that he had hacked into my computer and not only could he now access every one of my contacts but he knew what I had been doing and what’s more he had filmed me. He was now demanding money from me or else he (I’m making the assumption that this was a man) was going to contact everyone in my address book by sending them a video of me ‘pleasuring myself’ whilst watching an adult website. I deleted it but was tempted to reply saying that if anyone out there wanted to see a 75 year old woman eating an ice-cream whilst searching for a nice pair of comfy shoes on line they would be very welcome! Whatever turns you on!
Even my old friend the Archers is having some terrible storylines at the moment. Jim Lloyd was abused by an old family friend when he was a child and he has had a complete meltdown. I don’t know what age Jim is supposed to be but he must be at least as old as me, probably older. He is of a generation that, I’m perfectly certain, would never behave like this. He seems to be having what used to be called a nervous breakdown, is now apparently referred to by the medical profession as an acute episode of psychiatric symptoms and by me as going bonkers. Be that as it may he is crying, screaming, and breaking things, from my experience someone like that would keep an episode from his childhood to himself. It may be the fashion to share everything, but there is actually merit in putting things behind you and getting on with your life. There seems to be an compulsive desire to over-share everything, which frequently means leaving your life on hold while you try to find someone to sue for something that happened twenty years ago. I simply don’t believe that this character would behave like this.
And while I’m ranting I see that a woman, who changed sex (well not entirely as you will see) and now identifies as a man – just for the record the ability to grow a beard does not make you a man, if that were the case all post-menopausal women would qualify – but back to the newspaper story! This ‘man’ has had a baby and he is now insisting that he is listed on the baby’s birth certificate as the baby’s father So this poor confused mite is going to be the first baby in the world to be born without a mother.
As for language – when I send texts to my grandchildren they laugh indulgently because I write in proper English with punctuation and words spelled out in full. I put in apostrophes. As far as they are concerned I might as well be writing ‘Prithee Sirrah and Gadzooks for all the relevance it has to their own text speak. I suppose eventually they will need to be taught ‘old people speak’ as a foreign language at school and we in turn will need a dictionary of their language. I signed my emails LOL for years until it was explained to me what it meant after I sent an email sympathising with someone on the death of their mother and signed it off LOL Stella! I accept that languages should live and change but it gets increasingly difficult to keep up and I every much doubt if our families and friends would enjoy hearing us say things like ‘Yo Bro how’s it hangin’?’ – whatever that means!
Dementia units now have old fashioned things like replica greengrocers and bus shelter to make their residents feel safe and at home with things they recognise around them – sounds quite nice – so may see you there soon.