Various comments and meetings over the past week have made me think about this.
The first observation is that virtually all the photos on leaflets and stock images in papers are of elder folk with dementia which reinforces societies view. Why cannot Alzheimer’s Society and other organisations use us younger folk? For instance, a picture of someone with PCA, their eyes screwed shut in bright light? Other people will have other, better, ideas.
The other, more controversial, observation is that I believe that dementia IS gender neutral. There might be more diagnoses in women, but this is probably because Drs don’t diagnose it in men enough for old fashioned reasons. To have separate cliques for women only is very divisive, and dare I say it old fashioned. We should be beyond calling ourselves or our group “victims” of gender bias. I thought the dementia was meant to be very inclusive not exclusive; don’t get me started on distances to go for meetings! If a pwd feels uncomfortable talking in front of fe/males, they should consider private conversation 1:1. If a meeting of pwds does not allow the carers in, that is also exclusive, as carers are as important in our fight. I could not go to such a meeting as my carer has to take me to the meeting; what is she to do? Be a spare part in a cafe? What message does that send…
Gender in social care is another issue altogether which I will look at in another post.