Thursday, 3 May 2012

It helps if you can use the

language being used by those around you.
I have always been aware of this but I was particularly aware of it when I was in the emergency department and the eye clinic.
I have a reasonable grasp of the technical language. I have the capacity to ask questions. I was asked, "Are you still working?" Yes, I am. "What do you do?" I told them.
There I did not need to explain - both doctors understood what I do without further explanation. One of them actually said, "Oh yes, you've done some work for X?" Yes I had.
I was treated with respect and courtesy - and I feel they would treat all their patients that way. I would certainly hope that.
Once I had also told them about the work I do though I was also treated as more of a colleague than I might have been if I had not been able to speak their "language". I doubt they were aware of it but my nephew noticed it. It has given him something to think about.
There was a very different experience for someone else recently. It was raised, as such things are, on Twitter which is where I became aware of it. Someone called Michael Hodgson had his speech made fun of. in the press, the Sun newspaper I believe. I think Mr Hodgson is someone big in football but I do not care whether he is big or small or somewhere in between - or where he works. No doubt someone will enlighten me.
Who he is does not matter. What he is does matter. He is a person. His speech should not be made fun of. Nobody should have done it.  The media should be condemning such behaviour not participating in it.
Mr Hodgson can, if I have his area of occupation correct, speak what might be termed "advanced football". I cannot even speak "elementary football" - I can barely manage "elementary cricket". He knows about things of which I have no knowledge at all. I respect that.
I would also respect the woman with Down's Syndrome who was trying to explain what she wanted to the shop assistant yesterday - and the assistant, who just happens to be a psychology student as well, was just as pleased as she was when they had it sorted out. It took a little extra effort but they could use the language.
It is using language, in all its shapes, forms and sizes and ways, to get your message across that matters. It is not the way you physically say it.

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