Three A.M. Thoughts: ‘Doctor’s Orders’

It is a cultural artifact that we regard medical professionals as authority figures. We expect them to command us and we are expected to obey. Hence the phrase: ‘doctor’s orders’. This relationship does not work for Type 1 Diabetes. It infantilizes the patient, which is the worst possible outcome. A person living with Type 1 needs a team of professional health care providers (endocrinologists, opthamologists, general practitioners, nurses, dietitions, psychologists, social workers, diabetes educators) to help with management of the condition. But the patient needs to be the Captain of that team. Healthcare providers should be trusted advisors, not authority figures. Healthcare providers may have relevant and necessary training and expertise in the science of the condition. I say ‘may have’ because in my experience not every healthcare provider who purports to understand T1D actually does. And a little knowledge, as they say… Many conflate it with Type 2, and seem to think that all diabetes — and all diabetics — are the same. This is one of the things that irritates me the most. As far as I am concerned, Type 2 is a whole different medical condition that is not relevant to my life or my chronic medical condition. The [...] continue the story

Useful

A short film featuring the struggles of a doomed couple.

Official music video for ‘Use Somebody’ by Kings Of Leon, performed by Scala & Kolacny brothers. scalachoir.com

Shot on Three days in Brussels and Antwerp, Belgium. 27th of February, 28th of February and 29th of February.

Official selection shortfilmcorner Cannes filmfestival 2011. Best international experimental shortfilm at the New York Independent Film Festival 2011. Young directors award at the Cristal Festival 2011.

Director: Inti Calfat Scenario: Inti Calfat & Hugo Van Laere DOP: Bjorn Charpentier Producer: Frederik Zaman & Mitchel Elsen, TRS Production manager: Thierry Vandenbussche (outlandish) Production Assistant: Mike Madelein Production Assistant: Tatiana De Pret 1st camera Assisitant: Joris Rymen 2nd camera Assistant: Jolien De Graeve Chef Electro: Peter Van Den Bosch Styling: Jan Dendievel & Xavier Make-up: Marie Brabant Production Design: Olya Tsoraeva Decor: Simon Van Laar Special Effects: Martin De La Vallée Editor & composits: Hans Desmet Grading: Veerle Zeelmaeckers Sounddesign: Gregory Caron

Cast: Wife: Marijke Pinoy Husband: Hans Van Cauwenberghe Prostitutes: Dolores Bouckaert, Leen Van Dommel, Elke Shari.

Discovering my last taboo

By Ben Davies

In this article I am going to explore the morality of paying for the company of a female or indeed male if you are a disabled person.

But first I am going to talk about relationships and the potential barriers I feel exist as a disabled person. I personally really struggle with relationships and socialising full stop, whether it’s going the pub with the boys or chatting someone up. I simply cannot do it as my confidence in this area is really low. Overall I’m ok with the boys as we talk about football and drinking, the usual stuff. But when it comes to the ladies, this is where I really struggle.

When I meet a woman I’m attracted to, I know instantly whether they are seeing me or the four wheels I’m sitting on. In my experience a lot see the wheelchair and feel uncomfortable when I start checking them out, just like any other bloke would. Then I have the added barrier of impaired speech so if I do pluck up the courage to speak to them, I get the look that says something like ‘you’re in a wheelchair and you can’t speak properly so piss off.’

The speech [...] continue the story

In Sickness And In Health…

In sickness and in health… regardless of religion or cultural background, this vow usually makes its way into most wedding ceremonies. But how many of us in our relative youth at that time, actually truly understand what those words mean. “In health” is the easy part of course but what happens when unexpectedly some sort of chronic, serious illness decides to intrude on your perfect union?

That’s exactly what my husband Arun and I faced over fourteen years ago. We were married just five years when my symptoms began. And despite my desire to hide my head in the sand, he’s the one who encouraged me not to ignore the tremor. He was the one I ran to, my eyes full of angry tears, after the first neurologist had the gall to tell me he felt I had young onset Parkinson’s. He sat holding my hand when months later the second well-renowned movement disorder specialist confirmed this life sentence despite my desire to be absolved from the initial diagnosis.

He listened to what my physicians were recommending and took care of the practical side of things when all I heard were words and nothing was registering. And he was the one who [...] continue the story

The Man Who Couldn’t Eat

By Jon Reiner

This feels so illicit. And stupid. But really, I must lick this french fry. I’m not asking to eat it, mind you, that wouldn’t be good. I just want to lick it. Taste its salt. I cower in the kitchen, hiding from my wife and boys, who are out there, on the other side of the door, enjoying a sumptuous dinner, like eaters do — devouring what’s delicious, picking at what is not, saving room for dessert — while I starve.

Yes, I’m starving. There’s been nothing for two months now. No food, no drink, nothing in my mouth except the air I keep sucking. It would be plain to say the hunger is driving me mad, because it is. I crave food more than sex. The smell and touch of food can drop me to my knees. Food left me suddenly, in the chaos of emergency surgery, and, empty of food, I think about it constantly, an obsession that magnifies the ordinary into the surreal. A simple french fry is a wonder, an uneaten crust of bread salvation; something as unattainable as a fried egg, life itself. This trance is not healthy, or normal, but then those two [...] continue the story

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