This is another quick note to let you know that we will be appearing as star guests in the final of Strictly Come Dancing on Ice. We have fitted skis to the bottom of my chair so keep an eye out for something really special.
Err, actually the above is not entirely true. However, you may see us on the telly somewhere less glamorous and where legs are not absolutely necessary, or arms for that matter!
You can tune in to BBC1 Look North, the regional news channel for the North of England, where we hope we will be given a broader look at our case as my immediate family members were also involved.
So once again we would ask you to tell everyone you know, and for them to tell everyone that they now.
That is BBC1 Look North programme on television tomorrow, possibly at all editions, and to anyone who misses us, we will be adding the link to the BBC website as soon as we know it. [http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/7796041.stm – Ed.]
This was a second, longer news appearance. Neil’s mother Lynne and brother Matthew both bravely contributed in interviews , and I think by now we had become hardened to the shock of the ‘save our son’ angle that was more appealing to the media. We felt that if we had a way of making more people sit up and listen then we should use it, whether we liked it or not. We couldn’t show how much our family was being torn apart without showing our family.
Neil jokes about the reality TV shows because (without naming names!) various visitors, who had given up their time to help us, wanted to keep up with whoever had been kicked out of whichever show each day/week and they became more and more a part of our day. There were so many of them broadcast in the run-up to Christmas, it was impossible to avoid them. Sometimes it felt like we were living in a reality TV show ourselves, there was a similar format in the house between daily challenges, people coming and going, the odd dramatic emotional breakdown in public, cameras following us around, and the whole thing working toward a finale. Watching so much TV, however, strangely gave us a sense of being connected to the world outside our bubble, and also gave Neil something in common to talk about with his carers during a bedbath… never an easy time for polite chat.
That said, I do remember Neil’s comment on being forced to watch a certain soap opera three times a week (again, not naming any names). He insisted it was a ‘deliberate attempt by his nearest and dearest to intensify his state of torture.’ – Louise (2013)