Monday 26 March 2012

What's the diagnosis, Doc?

You’re no-one if you haven’t got a ‘syndrome’!  And guess what?  You can get pills to cure it!

You know how, in the past 15 years or so, people are no longer just a bit crap at spelling, but 'dyslexic'?  Please note, I am not having a pop at people who are genuinely word blind, but those who, similarly, cannot accept that their child is just an undisciplined little monster who needs a firm hand, but in fact has ADFHDDTA, or some other 'syndrome' made up by psychiatrists in order to sell more highly addictive drugs to the NHS or, indeed, the individual (though that whole subject requires a rant of its own, and a much more serious and informed one than I am likely to put on here).

Right, you also know how some conditions/illnesses become 'fashionable'?  For example, a couple of years ago the world and his wife were 'bi-polar'.  Not just a bit depressed, and by nature highly strung. 

I think I've just spotted the next one.  You may have noticed how Alzheimers is a bit of a hot potato at the moment.  Lots of research going into it, which is terrific.  A lot more recognition for the sufferers and their carers, marvellous.

Lots of articles in the papers about it.  Well, the other day I was on a bus and couldn't help but listen to a conversation behind me, which involved one woman telling her friend about her mother, who was a bit forgetful, and who, she thought, had 'a touch of Alzheimers'.  She expanded on this and repeated her theory several times.

Please note, I am not being dismissive of the possibility of her mother actually HAVING this disease.  But one can't have a 'touch of Alzheimers' in the way one can have a 'touch of indigestion'.  Forgetting to put the rubbish out on a Friday morning, or not being able to find your glasses does not mean you have Alzheimers.

Maybe she was just pissed and had forgotten where she put them.

I apologise in advance if this offends anyone, and fully accept that I may need to be treated with strong medication for "Extreme Tolerance Deficiency".  I bet that exists, too!

(oh, and ps – your sneezes, cough and muzzy head don’t mean you have a ‘touch of flu’. You’ve got a cold.  If you had flu, which is short for influenza, you’d know about it)


  1. Haha! I guess I have an incurable case of the giggles. Let's get you treated for your ETD so you can enjoy your life a bit more. Gotta go take my prozac, so I'll hop off now.

  2. Karen, I realised I had OTD (obssessive tweeting disorder) when my husband said something to me and I thought, that'd make a good tweet....
    I'd better get down the doctors, I'm sure he can prescribe me something for it!

  3. I agree wholeheartedly with the main point of this article and, having read your other piece on your own experience with Alzheimer's, I understand "where you're coming from" and I sympathise.

    I would like, if I may, to expand a little on the subject you said requires a whole rant of its own. My own opinion is that in this super new Utopia we live in, where disciplining children the old way has been outlawed, teachers and most other traditional figures of authority, including parents, have become ineffective and marauding tribes of untamed criminal youths threaten to terrorize and take over whole communities.
    Once the architects of this soft and fluffy, caring society realised the "mistake" they had made, it became necessary to invent a nice fluffy, caring alternative means to smack and discipline children and so the new syndromes were born.

    When I was a baby I'd get a smack if I got too near the fire, cooker or any other place dangerous for a small child to be meddling in and I learned from this example to stay away from these places. If I persisted I'd receive more smacks and soon realised what was best for me. At school I was taught how to behave and get by in society. If a child broke the rules, disrupted things for other people or misbehaved in any of the ways it is natural for children finding their way in the world to do on occasion, then that child would be smacked and would learn from that experience that certain behaviour results in punishment. The other children would witness this and learn, "Pavlov's Dogs" style, from this example not to behave that way. Being sent to the "naughty corner" is not seen as punishment by children, more as an entertaining game and as such, it encourages further misbehaviour and so a vicious circle begins.

    So what do today's nice, caring, fluffy, modern parents do now that they've been told to abhor the so-called barbaric ritual of smacking? In a conspiracy of silence, they look the other way and pretend to believe the lie that their child is not merely being naughty but has a "syndrome" and is special, which then allows them to smack that child harder and for longer than ever before with dangerously addictive drugs, the long-term psychological damage of which will not be know for quite some years, but at least they'll have a bit of short-term peace. It's a chemical cosh.

    The attention that is deficient in a lot of these children is the attention of their parents who are out at work for long hours and are too tired to fulfil their responsibilities as parents when they finally get home in time to relieve the nanny and put the children to bed. You must excuse me now, the kids are arguing. Better sneak a couple of valiums in their whiskey lest they continue this rowdiness when they get back to school.

  4. Well that's them sorted. My darlings are staggering toward the bus stop now.

    I think I was finished my little rant but I'd like to add that despite my misgivings about coshing kids with chemicals, there is one beneficial good point I neglected; Massive profits for the lovely big caring, fluffy drug companies, the very people who invented the syndromes in the first place.