Tids and the care system


Tids was a healthy baby, born in 1965. At age two she contracted meningitis, which caused severe lasting disabilities.

One, of a large family, Tids was included in all family activities, and much loved by her brothers and sisters, and parents.  She attended a special school, which, in the 60’s was only required to provide care, and entertainment.

Tids grew up to be a very beautiful young woman. She laughed and smiled at her friends and family, and loved music. Tids understood everything that was said to her, and showed this by facial expressions, and some body movement. She could show very clearly when she disliked people!

Care staff at the day centre that Tids attended, thought that she may be able to use a computer somehow, with her eyes. They told the management staff of the day centre this, and were told not to waste time and money. There was no spare staff time to work one to one with Tids to enable her to learn to use a computer.

Tids needed help with all care needs, and had to be helped with drinking and swallowing, with great care. Often due to lack of time, she swallowed badly and choked on food and drink, which really scared her, and gave her cramps which were very painful.  She was not able to cough and clear her lungs. Sometimes she was put on the floor to help with the cramp.

A close friend had a communication aid, and she loved to hear him speak. It made her laugh and her eyes sparkled when she was with him. He thought that she could have learned to use an aid similar to his, but nobody else agreed.

Tids had frequent chest infections, and failed to recover from one very severe infection. Her funeral was attended by hundreds of people, and she was laid to rest at the age of 32 years, in a cemetery close to the day centre.

Things you may want to look into: communication aids that speak

December 2012