• 2015,  acceptance,  attitudes,  books and reading,  disability,  fiction,  language,  quotes,  Uncategorized

    “Special Needs”

    Language around disability is a really tricky thing. Some terms are acceptable to some people and completely unacceptable to others. Some are fine for disabled people to use amongst themselves or to refer to themselves but problematic when used by strangers.  And there are times when disabled people argue amongst themselves about the terms.  People first language and identity first language are two of the biggest culprit’s there. One term that I’ve been saying I don’t like and arguing against for the last few years is “special needs”  I can explain why I don’t like it but it’s something I find others always agree with although some people do come…

  • 2014,  advocacy,  blogging,  comedy,  language,  the r word,  theatre,  twitter,  Uncategorized

    Hate isn’t Funny, part two

    To recap: On Wednesday I went to see Omid Djalili do a warm up gig.  I really wish I hadn’t because not only did he used the R word in one of his jokes he also did another which was the most horrendously ableist joke I’ve ever heard.  On Friday I posted a blog about that – Hate Isn’t Funny. This is the last I’m going to say on the matter. That blog post got a lot of attention on twitter and facebook (and in comments here).  It’s also had the most hits of any of my posts on this blog in a very long time (I’ve not seen the…

  • 2013,  attitudes,  blogging,  campaigns,  CP related,  current affairs,  disability,  disability blogs,  disablism,  freedom,  guest blog,  interwebs,  language,  Paralympics,  political,  press,  ranting,  sailing,  Uncategorized

    Disability in the media

    I’m paying a second visit over at Bea Magazine this month.  I wrote about the disability issues which were raised by the news that paralympian Oscar Pistorius has been arrested on suspicion of murdering his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp. You can read it here: Disability and the Reeva Steenkamp Murder The coverage of disability in the media has always been problematic but I’m really hoping this might be the beginning of it changing. I suspect that it’s more likely that it will change the way violence against women is covered by the media than disability.  Still I hope. Last year I was asked to speak to the local paper about my…

  • 2012,  acceptance,  advocacy,  awareness,  CP related,  current affairs,  language,  Uncategorized

    Speaking Out

    A few days ago it came out that the little girl who went missing in Machynlleth in Wales last week, April Jones has cerebral palsy.  It kinda made me stop and pause a moment hearing that she’s got CP just like me more than anything else I’d heard about the case. The news coverage all seemed to use the term suffer “Missing Girl April Suffers from CP” screamed the headlines. I posted to a facebook group for CPers that I belong too that I wasn’t sure whether to be impressed that she’d gone missing Monday night and it had taken until Wednesday night before mention of her disability was made in…

  • 2012,  disability,  language,  Uncategorized,  wheelchair

    >The Meaning of Wheelchair User #wheelchair #language #disability #disability #CP

    >I’ve been thinking for a while that there needs to be a different term to wheelchair user. I spend 99% of my waking hours in my wheelchair. I can stand to transfer but I need to get my chair right by the bed or the loo or whatever. The thing I’m transferring to needs to be the right height and also stable. In the bathroom I have to have grab rails and with them I can take a couple of steps. If I stay in a hotel I have to a room with a wheel in / level access shower. That’s what I mean when I say “I’m a wheelchair…

  • botox,  disability,  friends,  frustrations,  language,  Paralympics,  physio,  serial casting,  spasticity,  Uncategorized

    >Interesting Times

    >Lately I feel like I live in Interesting Times as in the Chinese saying.  It’s certainly been an interesting week. Monday my powerchair broke down with no warning. In the middle of Sainsbury’s car park. In the drizzle. Although luckily it wasn’t raining as such at that point in time. I tried to talk a Sainsbury’s employee through putting my chair into freewheel but he couldn’t do it (whether my instructions weren’t right/clear enough or he didn’t force it hard enough I don’t know) so my plan of getting a taxi back here fell through. I called my parents house on the off chance someone was there not expecting there…

  • attitudes,  disability,  language,  the r word,  Uncategorized,  video

    >Not Acceptable

    >Regular readers of my blog will know that the R word is one that I hate.  I’ve written about it many times before and unfortunately will more than likely have cause to write about it many more times in the future.  An argument I’ve made to many people is “if you wouldn’t use … (insert derogatory term about another minority group) then don’t use the R word”.  It’s hate speech, it’s unacceptable and it hurts.  It actually, physically, hurts. Unfortunately the R word is alive and well at present as demonstrated by the fact that Caitlin Moran used it in her recently published book which is being pimped left right…

  • blogging,  comments,  disability,  identity,  language,  medical model,  social model,  twitter,  Uncategorized

    >Spoonie comments

    >My previous post got what I think is the biggest response I’ve had to my blog ever.  Or at least in a long time.  15 comments here on the blog and at least as many others commenting on twitter.  I knew posting something titled “Why I’m Going Off The Term Spoonie” would stir people up but I didn’t expect that. I’ve been really loving reading the responses and seeing all the different points of view.  Especially the ones that made me think.  I think I probably need to write something else now I’ve had the chance to talk to so many others and also to discover that my views on…

  • awareness,  disability,  identity,  language,  twitter,  Uncategorized

    >Why I’m Going Off The Term Spoonie

    >For the past several weeks, in fact probably the last two months or so, I’ve been really going off the term Spoonie. I mentioned something about that on twitter earlier this week and it didn’t go down well. I sort of had the impression that, perhaps, people were reacting to what I’d said without looking at all of what I’d said.  This is my attempt at explaining myself properly.  Please don’t take offense, these are my views and only that.  I in no way mean to imply that I think the term shouldn’t be used.  It just doesn’t work for me. The Spoon Theory is a way of describe what…

  • disability,  language,  One Month Before Heartbreak,  Uncategorized

    >Announcing One Month Before Heartbreak

    >I can’t believe I’m so behind in my blogging that I officially announced this more than a week ago and I’m only just getting round to posting about it here on my own blog. A couple of weeks ago I had a bit of a brainwave of something that The Broken of Britain could do.  After having a couple of twitter chats with Kaliya and some thinking this was announced the Friday before last One Month Before Heartbreak A Broken of Britain Blogswarm 14th – 16th January 2011 What is it? It’s something a bit similar to Blogging Against Disablism Day (BADD). Although I will run this yearly if I need to, I’m really hoping…