‘I’m pregnant’, ‘Marry me’, ‘You’re ugly’ or ‘That’s beautiful’.
For me, the two most crucial words in my life are ‘Yes’ and ‘No’. When I’m having a ‘ticcing fit’ and I’m in pain it’s through these two words, or more accurately, blinks, that I know I’ll get relief.
I know, too, the pain two words can cause, and I’ve felt my confidence shatter when strangers tell me to ‘Shut up.’
I also know how empty words can be if they’ve got no feeling behind them. I tic “Fuck” hundreds of times a day, but often people don’t even hear it because they know I don’t mean it and it’s just a noise.
As a disabled person I also know the power of the two words at the heart of Scope’s video, ‘Social Care’.
These words describe the essential support given to disabled and vulnerable people – help with washing, getting dressed, and all the other things that mean we can lead independent lives. It’s the support these words define that keeps me going. Among many other things, my social care means I’m not alone when I have a fit in the middle of the night, that having a shower’s no longer an extreme sport, and that the castle is my home, not my prison.
But social care is under threat. Government policies mean many people aren’t getting the help they need and even for those who do, this help is at risk. As Stephen Fry says in the video ‘The government is at a crossroads and what they do depends on how much they think we care.’ He goes on to ask that everyone posts a picture of themselves onto their website which includes the words ‘I Care’ to show the Government how much Britain cares about social care.
Please take part in this campaign and help make politicians care too.
Here’s my picture and my pledge.