Exploring learning disabilities: supporting belonging
Exploring learning disabilities: supporting belonging

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Exploring learning disabilities: supporting belonging

1.1 Caring in intimate relationships

Like others in the population, some people with learning disabilities find themselves becoming a carer for their partner.

Activity 2 Shifting roles

Timing: Allow about 10 minutes

Watch this short video about Charlene and Terry. They are in a romantic relationship but Charlene is also Terry’s carer. Then answer the questions below.

Download this video clip.Video player: Video 3
Skip transcript: Video 3

Transcript: Video 3

TERRY
When my mum-- she's been ill, recently. So Char had to take on the brunt of my care. So that's been hard for us, hasn’t it?
CHARLENE
And also, I hope you don't mind bringing this up, as well. Terry's dad passed away. What was it? Sorry. I know that's hard for you. But--
TERRY
A year ago.
CHARLENE
A year ago-- and he would normally-- did all the support for Terry. And he used to drive. So he would take us to where we got to get to.
And now, God rest his soul. Rest in peace. I've got that full responsibility, now, to make sure if Terry's got to go somewhere, I've got to make sure that Terry's there on time, making sure that she's ready and stuff, and make sure she's OK and text stuff. So, yeah. So it's like I've got the full responsibility that he had. Yeah.
End transcript: Video 3
Video 3
Interactive feature not available in single page view (see it in standard view).
  1. Why has Charlene taken on more responsibility for Terry’s care?

a. 

Because Terry’s social care package changed


b. 

Because Terry’s family circumstances changed


The correct answer is b.

  1. What are some of the things that Charlene supports Terry with?

a. 

Getting ready to go somewhere


b. 

Getting to places


c. 

Financial issues


The correct answers are a and b.

Have the videos about Charlene and Terry (Video 3) and Gloria and Muriel (Video 2) in this section challenged your views about the types of relationships that people with learning disabilities have? The boundaries in relationships are often blurred: a romantic relationship may cross into a caring relationship; a caring relationship may become a deep and long-lasting friendship. This applies to everyone, not just people with learning disabilities.

This section has shown that while many people with learning disabilities need support, some also provide care and support for others. However, society rarely acknowledges when people with learning disabilities are caring for others. This means that people with learning disabilities can lose out on support or resources that they are entitled to as carers.

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