User Comments

therage August 7, 2022

@Laura Palmer Completely agree that SAHM's can be setting themselves up for poverty, which is why I believe training for re entering the workforce is an important thing to look at. IMO barriers to study are often financial for SAHM's who feel they haven't earned an income or may be told by oppressive partners that they can't afford it. A start may be assessing their individual income (often nil or very low) in order to allow access to free or subsidised courses at TAFE or as is the case for people on low income health care cards.

therage April 26, 2022

I'd love to know what kind of "rigorous and comprehensive reporting" teachers are doing ... because if this is referencing term reports, us parents certainly aren't getting any info there!

To be clear, this is not having a go at teachers - this is having a go at the ridiculous demands of the department. Reports with no purpose. Unnecessary and excessive admin taking time from actual teaching. The department is filling teachers days with 'busy work' to make it look like the head honchos are worth the bloated salaries they are taking home. It's sickening.

therage April 20, 2022

@gypsy it seems you have not read my comment. This is not about flexible workplaces necessarily - it's about understanding environments wherein people can work well and not drown. 

Once a culture of listening to HOW a person works best exists, an adequately educated member of a HR department and connections with a good workplace psychologist can do the trick. As an example, suitable adjustments for a person with ADHD may be (but are not limited to) a stand up desk, a single contact for them to get their tasks from and ask questions of, and understanding of their need to use noise cancelling headphones when working. 

Now, I understand in small businesses, this is not necessarily possible (but some things certainly may be). In larger corporations, it most certainly is. For some people, just knowing they can freely have these conversations about how their divergency affects them in the workplace without being discriminated against makes all the difference. Many people know what helps them after a lifetime of struggling, and are happy to bring in their own resources - what they are lacking is the compassion and the understanding of the people who work with them.

If a workplace needed to provide access for a wheelchair user, would you say that was too extreme and respond in the same way? How about workers who wear glasses to see - would you ask them to take them off? Or a colleague who needed a hearing aid - do you think it is fair to ask them to remove it?

There are many disability adjustments that occur in daily life for many people. Many people with anxiety disorders, ADHD or Autism Spectrum disorders need some simple adjustments to be able to perform their jobs to the best of their ability, whilst keeping their mental health in a good place.

therage April 19, 2022

@rosiecat the thing is, though, if the work is the right fit, often neuro divergent people can be exceptional at their jobs. It’s not about other people picking up their slack, it’s about providing the right environment for a person to be able to function at their best without sensory/social and other factors becoming an issue. The fact that the first assumption is that other people need to pick up slack is a clue to just how much these issues are misunderstood. 

There was a story about a guy in the US who requested no birthday party at his workplace due to his severe anxiety. He was allegedly ignored, and the company thew the party anyway. His anxiety response was apparently unsettling for the other workers and he was fired. Had they just listened to his simple request, nothing would have happened.
Society has no real idea of what any of these disorders actually mean for people, and talking about understanding without actually understanding, which is what most people do, is a cop out.

therage April 18, 2022

Thank you so much for this article. I am in the same situation. Have shut down my business  after being incapable with dealing with the constant changes COVID has brought to both my work and family life, and unable to secure employment elsewhere. Caring for child with ADHD and ASD, in my 40's and have myself been diagnosed with ADHD within the last few years. A lifetime of stop/start jobs. Capable of so much, but with the need for flexibility and all of the struggles that ADHD brings. It can be debilitating. Thank you for bringing awareness to the struggle that many of us are facing right now.

therage November 4, 2021

'... she's not blaming government. She knows it's down to William, at 20 years old, to take responsibility for his addiction and be accountable for his behaviour.'

Actually, it's not totally up to him to take complete responsibility for his addiction and to be accountable for what he has done. The frontal cortex of the brain, that is, the area controlling impulsive behaviour and our executive functioning, does not fully develop until around 25 years old. It develops later in boys and men later than it does for girls. Young adults in Australia are exposed to incredibly aggressive advertising targeted right at them for this very reason. Make no mistake, marketers know exactly what they are doing when they are advertising directly to males with poor impulse control, little personal expenses (often still living at home) and a highly disposable income.
The worst thing is that in this scenario, the neuroplasticity that allows us to form new habits and learn new things by strengthening pathways through recognition and reward is also strengthened when performing an undesirable behaviour, such as gambling.
Don't completely blame yourself or your son - there is a lot at play making these scenarios so common all around the country. It's awful.

therage September 5, 2021

You should move to South West or Western Sydney - he won't have a choice! 

No jab, no job over here. We can't work until we're fully vaccinated over her (I think it may have changed recently to first jab - I can't keep up), alongside someone from your end who gets to choose not to have it and keep their job - and work in our LGA if they need to! 

Welcome to our classist Liberal Government.

therage August 24, 2021

One of the best pieces I have read in a long time. Absolutely what Australia has been lacking for so long - Leadership! And creative leadership, leaders with vision and courage! Spot on in saying we are run by a bunch of administrators. 

We teach the idea of flexibility and risk taking in primary schools these days (at least, at my sons school they do) and yet, when do we actually see this in the supposed leaders among us? I want to see, to be a part of a country that is innovative, interesting and dynamic - NOT frightened. Brave.

therage August 18, 2021

Want to hear an actual fact? 

I live in one of the LGAs that has been in hard lockdown for nearly two months now. 
Being a month shy of my 40th birthday, I thought I’d see if I could book a priority spot.  NO appointments available until the beginning of OCTOBER. Which is two weeks after my original appointment I had made which was booked weeks ago, for which I had to wait until I turned 40 as that was the only group it was available to at the time. What a mess.

All these pics you are seeing of people coming out of Pfizer vaccination clinics are people that have been pre booked already! 
I smell a rat.

therage November 17, 2020

We're a family that usually has dinner together. Growing up my family rarely did and my husbands always did. So we are somewhere in the middle. 

One thing I think (not confirmed, no studies or anything, just me percolating) is MORE important, is that meal times shouldn't feel like a punishment! I have seen, too often, kids fed on the dinner table alone, early, miserable with a parent hovering in the background complaining about how much their child doesn't eat. Well, really - if I was sitting at a table alone with someone complaining about how awful I am within earshot, I wouldn't want to eat, either! 

We may not always manage to have meals together, some might be hungrier than others earlier, other commitments may not make it work - but whatever your scenario is, I reckon making it feel comfortable and relaxed is more important than creating a battleground :)