For anyone who has seen someone go through dementia or knows anyone who has witnessed it, they will know what a horrible and cruel disease it is and what it can cause, which is why it is important to raise awareness for it, however, the comments that Katie Hopkins mad were absolutely disgraceful.
Anyone how has ever watched This Morning on ITV, or watched her on Celebrity Big Brother will know what a motormouth Katie Hopkins can be. This is the woman who judges children on their names, and a lot to do with people choosing names of places for their children, but this is the woman who named her child India.
This time she has really gone and outdone herself by making comments about dementia sufferers like:
People who suffer from dementia can die from this, it’s not something to be even joking about, it’s a serious illness. In this world there are 850,000 people who live with dementia, and for someone to say it as if they were no longer living is disgusting. To watch someone you love, a person who you have memories with not be the person they were a few years ago, not remember the same things you do.
Symptoms of dementia can include things like:
- Memory loss
- Thinking speed
- Mental agility
Now these people don’t have a choice whether or not they get this debilitating disease, they have done nothing wrong, and to be called “bed blockers” is vile. These people need support and care, anyone who makes that kind of comment is naive to think that it is as simple as that.
I know family who have been through this terrible disease and those kinds comments fuel the stigma that is related to dementia and what they believe could happen if they came forward. Dementia is serious and these comments could make it become another of those hidden illnesses much like depression, bipolar and other mental illnesses.
It is important to challenge the stereotypes, negative connotations that come with dementia and even the old fashion ideals of suffering dementia. One thing to remember though is that it doesn’t take away the person, the person that you love and adore is still there and just because they might have lost some of their memories, that person is still there.
It is ignorant for someone to make that kind of comment to make a joke or insult people who have to live with this day in, day out. The final blow in her twitter rant came when she tweeted:
What is important is that people who suffer with severe dementia, they need someone to care for them, they need those people around them who have supported living housing, respite care, day groups and ever home care. If it has got to the point where a person is in the hospital it means that they need support, support that maybe families can’t give because they’re not medical professionals. Let’s not forget though the difficulty that it can be for the families to watch someone they care about start to struggle with an illness and try to look past what has changed.
What makes it worse is she has done this before towards other illnesses such as depression. when this is something that you shouldn’t be joked about, it’s serious and I think Katie Hopkins needs to understand what families go through when someone is struggling with mental health illnesses or any other illnesses for that matter.
I would never normally give someone like Katie Hopkins the time of day, however, I do believe that it is really important to challenge the stigma that is related to things like dementia, depression and other mental health issues. I think broadcasters and social networks need to realise that being paid for this is the worst, and if a non celebrity was to do that they would be kicked off social networks, but not only that they wouldn’t be treated like a celebrity.