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Madmouse's open letter to MNHQ about the treatment of those with disabilities on MN

(556 Posts)
madmouse Wed 20-Jun-12 19:05:45


I joined MN when I was pregnant with my lovely ds. That heady autumn with bump before such words as NICU, neonatal seizures, brain damage, cerebral palsy, speech delay, special school entered my vocabulary.

That was 5 whole years ago - and all that time MN has been a part of my life. Got a lot of support from my ante- and postnatal buddies and from experienced SN mums. Gave back where I could. Became ill with PTSD, found the MH threads, recovered, started to give support on the MH threads.

Now I've come to the point that the only thing stopping me from leaving MN is that I would let down people on the MH threads. Other than that your (MNHQ) behaviour today has been an eye opener and a bit of a final straw.

MN has become, like RL, a place where disabled people and people with disabled children are not safe, not treated equally and not extended the same courtesy and respect as those without disabilities.

What happened today is just a tip of the ice berg. Day in day out threads appear with the same old theme. AIBU to use this disabled space because my baby's maxi cosy is too big and the P&T spaces are full, AIBU to use the wheelchair space on the bus (those two appear weekly by and large), AIBU to think it's nice to be disabled because you get lots of benefits, AIBU to think disabled people have it easy, AIBU to think I should have a free car too seeing as that I pay taxes.

It goes on and on and on. And none of it is ever challenged other than by a small group of us who do all this fighting in RL too - because it affects us and our children.

There is such thing as discrimination. And you do have a duty to stamp it out. Hand off moderation is no excuse certainly seeing how quick you were to delete 2shoes thread when some of us started fighting back against the endless threads of threads which in turn are copies of last week's threads.

I am very disappointed. And I think you have some thinking to do.

Best wishes

StealthPolarBear Wed 20-Jun-12 19:09:46

I would ask what has happened but I've seen a few thread titles and can guess the way they went. Sorry you are feeling like this.

5inthebed Wed 20-Jun-12 19:11:25

Eloquently said MM

LemarchandsBox Wed 20-Jun-12 19:15:02

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Peachy Wed 20-Jun-12 19:15:46

Well said; I have had to pull back a lot as the constant stress and fighting- or as MNHQ call it educating- ended with me having a breakdown and feeling like a massive drain and worthless. I actually came to believe all the stuff about cost to taxpayers and would not be here now were it not for a fabulous GP and meds, these comments were both from MN and rl, friends and family.

I wonder if people really get how it feels to hear that tripe trotted out almost daily?

dottyspotty2 Wed 20-Jun-12 19:17:40

Extremely well said madmouse.

Coconutty Wed 20-Jun-12 19:19:42

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

littletommy22 Wed 20-Jun-12 19:20:22

well said madmouse

SauvignonBlanche Wed 20-Jun-12 19:20:51

Well said madmouse, all this 'educating' is becoming depressing.

TheHumancatapult Wed 20-Jun-12 19:21:25

well said and very true

Maryz Wed 20-Jun-12 19:21:49

To sum it up - there have been three threads in the last week justifying various situations which would make it ok for people with no disability to occupy the wheelchair space on a but.

Eventually 2shoes got a bit peed off and posted a "why are people so jealous of wheelchair users". Her thread was deleted as it was a thread about a thread, and apparently hmm goading and attention seeking.

GiveTheAnarchistACigarette Wed 20-Jun-12 19:22:00

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Maryz Wed 20-Jun-12 19:22:09

bus, fuckit, bus, not but.

expatinscotland Wed 20-Jun-12 19:23:35

Here, here, madmouse!

Coconutty Wed 20-Jun-12 19:23:37

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

hazeyjane Wed 20-Jun-12 19:25:15

I don't understand why the second wheelchair on a bus thread was allowed to stand? Surely that was a thread about a thread and just seemed a deliberate attempt to prolong the first thread, which was bad enough.

Puffinsaresmall Wed 20-Jun-12 19:26:52

Did MN say it was 'goading' and 'attention seeking'? shock

Maryz Wed 20-Jun-12 19:27:30

Because apparently the poster posted it when the other thread was full hmm. It did seem odd to me that she waited until the other one was full to comment, but I suppose it might have been coincidental.

But it was still used by loads of people to try to come up with reasons when it would be ok to use the wheelchair space.

LemarchandsBox Wed 20-Jun-12 19:28:05

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Maryz Wed 20-Jun-12 19:28:14

No Puffin, to be fair they didn't actually say that. But a number of posters on the thread said it was, and it was reported.

cakeismysaviour Wed 20-Jun-12 19:29:47

Agreed. I was also very angry to see the OP of the bus thread start a new thread, which was promptly answered by various people saying they wouldn't have moved either. angry Who do they think they are?

ForFoxsGlacierMints Wed 20-Jun-12 19:30:44

I agree it does seem unfair.

For what its worth a lot of things 2shoes (and others) said on the bus thread really, really made me think about things which I have previously had no exposure to. I'm really sorry its a constant fight.

GobblersKnob Wed 20-Jun-12 19:31:14

Very well said madmouse.

It's deeply depressing that it needs saying.

greenblue Wed 20-Jun-12 19:31:15

Just want to show my solidarity. Well said Madmouse.

I don't post much, more of a lurker but the disability discrimination does bring me out from under my stone as it seems to be so pervasive at the moment. My brother has downs and we're currently fighting a god almighty fight for the most basic of health care so I really empathise with the stuggles the SN parents describe on here.

What gets me, what stings somewhere deep inside my being is the very very subtle unintended prejudice like on the antenatal testing threads where people say "my mate X had an amnio, waiting for the results was such a stressful time but fortunately she now has a perfect 3 year old'. Can a child with downs not be perfect? I find that so hurtful but of course its difficult to challenge as these threads are understandably sensitive and the OP is invariably going through hell (and I truly feel for them, I do). I don't know what the answer is, guess I'm just offloading/ thinking aloud.

TSCs thread got pulled? That's not fair, I thought it was quite a a good op and wholly justified as stand alone, but then I only read the op briefly.

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