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Dr Speedy Gonzales, the fastest GP in the west

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care services and care homes, carers

I rang the Doctor's surgery as Wriggly Bum shows signs of another Squamous Cell Carcinoma.

Dr . SG himself came, in his irritatingly flash car (down girl, no need to get bitchy!).

This is the second time he has visited, though the word “visit” itself needs parenthesising, since he stays just long enough toremind me, yet again, that he has X thousand patients, to infer that we are very privileged to have some of his precious time, and to take a cursory glance at the problem, which he will “refer”.

It seems hardly worth closing the door when he has stepped in, only to have to open it again a few seconds later to let him out.

I try, I really, really try, to live by the mantra (of Bambi's poor, ill fated Mum, I think – could be wrong) “if you can't say somefink nice, don't say nuffink at all”, but in Dr SG's case it is extremely difficult. It is even more difficult to find anyone in the vicinity who has a good word for him. But what is it about Doctors, that no-one feels able to stand up to them? Why do they leave it all to me? I have twice challenged the GP in question about his arrogance, about his duty of care, and his penchant for talking me down, rather than listening to me.

Since these spats, he now eats out of my hand, though sadly there is little change in his manner. If only his other detractors wouldspeak to his face, rather than behind his back, I'm sure he would begin to realise that he must be more user friendly, and be seen to justify his posh set of wheels.

Me, why, I even tell God when I'm a bit naffed off with Him, so I cannot understand this blind reverence and fear of upsetting a GP.

Maybe I'm just a fool. Or not a nice person. Or both.

The truth is that, much as we try to put on a 'I can manage perfectly well' face, we carers do need props which we can, from time to time, lean on. GPs should be such a prop, and often they aren't.

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Anne de Gruchy

I don’t find caring for my dad easy.  The word ‘carer’ slips out freely enough – I have worked with carers and in the field of mental health over many years and, just as I am not shy of admitting to having mental health problems, I am happy to identify myself as a carer.


When I first embarked on my role of carer, any help I had with WB's care was that which I bought from various care agencies, because that was the only way I knew.


Many years ago, before we had any idea of what our own fate might be, we were slightly acquainted with a man and his wife, a very quiet couple, who regularly attended the same church as us.