Lament of a new resident in an old people’s house

Before you read this – remember the vast majority of people in old people’s homes are likely to be deaf, or deafblind…..  Make sure you know how to communicate effectively if you are working in a care setting.  Disabled people once had a life, you know, just like you and me.

I hate that you should call me “Dear”, And say “How are we today”,

In that insincere and patronising voice.

I am a person, not a pet, I understand, there is no need to stroke me.

I hate the way you used my Christian name, Before you even asked or knew me.

I do not want to be another Lucy, Jane or Emma, A nonentity in a crowd of first named women.

I am Mrs Brown and proud to bear his name.

Perhaps when I have chosen my first few friends, We can embark upon a closer understanding.

Beneath those shabby genteel clothes, I am an entity.

That has been built up year by year, By joys and sorrows, work and play,

Responsibility, experience, love.


I am the little girl who wandered in the primrose wood.

I am the girl whose French was always weak, but passed exams, Who loved Geography, and wallowed in a world of words.

I am the student whose college days were rich, with friends’ philosophy, ideals new thoughts.

I am the woman who was wife and mother, Who knew the splendour of a family bound with love.

But also knew the heartbreak and the passing from baby wants to teenage needs and pressures.

Of loss of irreplacable companion.


I am the traveller, who slept on mountain tops, who braved the Arctic seas of the North Cape.

I am the wife who loved to cook and clean, whose house was filled with friends who came,

to talk, to walk, to put the world aright.

I am a person. I am me. I am not “dear”.

Mrs Margaret Ridley – from Milbrook, Cornwall.

About Suzie

Mother, Wife, Teacher, Cook and Hearing dog owner. Passionate about Equality for deaf and deafblind people. Believes in communication for all and breaking down these barriers, real and perceived. Deafened.
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