Susie Mallett

Parent blog

Friday 4 November 2011


 "Making friends"
(That is me being silly with my ice-cream)

"Old Friends"
(That is my Grandma with the gloves and hat, just how I go out nowadays!)

My life 

Sometimes I just want to sit down and read the papers. As I only get one newspaper a week that arrives on Saturday mornings usually I resort to reading the news online, often just before bed with a cup of tea.

As I have been at home all day today I am finished with all the jobs and sitting down with a cuppa much earlier.

Often when I read the news my thoughts stray back to work related subjects, sometimes things crop up that I feel necessitate a bit of blogging.

This just happened. Two articles appeared on the screen, one after the other, that are all about a subject that comes up often in my work.

Making friends

Teenagers with disabilities talk to me about getting out and about and meeting people. Adults tell me too about the difficulties they have socialising. Not just difficulties with accessibility, but with the availability of suitable transport and with the behaviour shown towards them because of their disabilities.

Here on the BBC website I read of more such experiences and of one charity’s attempts to ease the difficulties for some of these people:

Young “Petö” adults

There are now several young people living at the sheltered housing complex where our conductive centre is situated who were amongst our first “Petö” children, as they call themselves.
It is these young adults who speak to me about their feeling of isolation and their wishes to make non-disabled friends.

We encourage these youngsters to have high expectations and to have ambitions and most of them develop them.  How do we help them to live with them though?

It is so difficult for us to keep on providing what these people so rightly wish for themselves. Sometimes all I can offer is a listening ear and suggest who it is best to speak to about a specific problem. At other times I can offer a bit more, but I have other commitments and other work to do and the day is only so long.

Independent living, or is it?

Once these youngsters have left home they no longer have their parents fighting to provide them with what we take for granted as our normal social life. They realise that going to the disco or even organising a trip to a cinema is not that easy. Especially when the accessible transport runs only until 10.30!

These young people not only face problems making relationships they have added problems getting to places where they can even make an attempt at it.

A first step?

Recently one young lady and I came up with an idea.  She will start to make enquiries and will ask the bus company whether the night-liner bus  can do a re-route of just one hundred-yards, so whenever some of our youngsters plucks up enough courage to go-out-on-the-town alone on Saturday night so they can get back home!

We will see what response she gets so we can determine if she needs help in her cause from another source.

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