Watching Employable Me

I admit to a moment’s trepidation when deciding to watch the latest series of this programme. (And I’m not sure I appreciate the BBC’s tag line, ‘Britain’s most extraordinary job seekers’  but more about that later.)

I found it, though, really enjoyable and refreshing, and not in ways I expected it to. I was dreading feeling the same dead and depressing feelings that I felt while I was working – and looking for work. And it occurs to me – so late in the day! – that since I was so very unhappy for most of my legal career, the obvious answer would have been to go and do something else! Yet so many of us in work are unhappy, or have periods of deep frustration. These are burdens we each have to work through. I did eventually leave my conventional office job, and I could not go back to that now, but the obvious point is, if a thing makes us feel suicidal, we should step away from it.

I like the format of this series, though I couldn’t help wishing, just occasionally, that the mentors who had been employed to motivate our candidates were not all able bodied, swish and slim. Surely the most inspiring message would come from a fully and happily employed person with impairments? Never mind. Perhaps that is a teething problem and the BBC will employ me to inspire others… Dream on, Fran.

Watching this programme, one statement, ‘There is a difference being born with a disability because you don’t know any better…but having 21 years of being able to walk and then having that taken away from you is horrible…’ rather stuck in my craw. Though I wouldn’t say it upset me, there was a time when I would have thrown something at the telly, and regrettably, it is the kind of rather careless disability elitism that dogs the disability movement. More of which later.

It is simply false that persons with birth-related impairments can’t know what we haven’t had. I did, and I do, and it still upsets me occasionally. I will always hate country dancing. And love it.

Thanks for reading.

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