In the last few days the Chronically Ill Community has been angry, upset and frustrated. The reason why? A TV programme being broadcast by the BBC called Sickness and Lies.
As soon as this came out, on the 5th August, so many Chronically Ill and Disabled people took to Twitter voice their disgust at a programme which is only going to add to the fuelling of Disability Hate Crime.
There is a lot of talk about hate crime, but not a lot about Disability Hate Crime. The conversations about its impact usually only take place amongst the Disabled Community. But I’m not here to talk about Disability Hate crime in general, I am here to discuss the idea of the programme ‘Sickness and Lies’.
I have watched the clip of the programme and from what I have watched I will not be watching the programme. The reason being that I believe it will just add to my already existing anger and frustration around people who believe that the community is faking it.
People like myself have a right to find community online, as we don’t always get to meet others like ourselves in day to day to life. We don’t always feel like we can go out and about and meet up with people and do stuff because we are in pain and exhausted from being in pain all the time.
It is exhausting.
To then find these articles online and TV programmes where people are exploring the ideas that there are people out there who are ‘faking it’, just makes us feel even more tired and frustrated. When you see other topics surrounding the way Disabled people are treated through disability claims, or even when they’re out and about is just adding to the feelings of frustration and anger.
All these things also generate the ‘faking it’ culture which people are lead to believe by the media. When in actual fact those claiming Disability Benefits who are faking it has been proven to be relatively low.
What I would hope the BBC follow up with is a programme about why this programme is so controversial. So they can look through social media and find comments made about their programme and enquire if those who are Chronically ill would be willing to speak to them about life with a chronic illness.
This maybe beneficial as it would allow the community to discuss their feelings about the programme. It would also allow the community to explore why more and more people are opening up about their chronic illness.
This would allow those watching it to recognise that is hard to live everyday in pain, and that what someone like me considers to be a normal pain day may actually be someone’s ‘I need to take the day off…’
All I want is for people to recognise the fact that living with a chronic illness is not easy, on many levels, and that we put up with a lot. That we don’t need these kinds of programmes to fuel culture of hate crime which already exists but a lot of people outside our community either chose to ignore or do not know about.
That could be a programme in itself.
Anyway I’m off.
If you could check out my fundraising page and maybe donate to help me a make a difference to those living with heart Disease that would be amazing. Thank you.