Ten-year-old self?

The Dementia self-help group reflects on its school days

As we reflected on our lives a few weeks ago, we began discussing nicknames we had been given as school children. How upsetting and hurtful some of these names had been; like Frenchy or Beanpole.

We then moved on to talk about what advice we would give to ourselves if we could see our ten year old self in front of us. The points seemed to follow a theme:

“Get an education”

“Learn as much as you can”

“Don’t be afraid to ask why”

“Enjoy life and be jolly”

As our activity we took on the role of Agony Aunts and wrote problems in a letter format and distributed them for discussion.

What advice would we give to:

An unmarried teenager who found out she was pregnant,

A 10-year-old left lonely and in a new place after her parents divorce,

A person feeling left out by others because of their loneliness.

In our discussion that followed we agreed COMMUNICATION is once again the key: talking to someone and letting them know how you feel. One of our group, a man in his 70s, when presented with the problem of the pregnant teenage girl paused thoughtfully and said “My advice to you is don’t talk to me about your problem!”

So if we have problems we should practice what we preach ourselves, talking with each other, or to staff, though choosing the right person to talk to is equally important!