UPDATE: https://www.hachette.co.uk/titles/sara-ryan/justice-for-laughing-boy/9781784506834/

Moved to the Peak District. https://mypeaklife.uk/

This blog started as a record of random happenings that I’ve experienced over time. It is was also about capturing everyday life, through image and snippets of conversation and observations, at home, on the bus and just wandering through life. Key players in these events, apart from LB (see below) will probably include Richy Rich and kids; Rosie, Will, Owen and Tom. As for me, I am a sociologist by background and work at a local university focusing on disability, health experiences, difference and inclusion.

The focus of the blog has shifted to ‘transition’ as LB comes to the end of his school life and stands, unaware, on the edge of a huge gap in adult services. 

It’s now about the experience of negotiating mental health/learning disability services, as the lack of both meant that LB was admitted to inpatient care a few months ago now.

Some people suggest that LB  (17) has various labels like autism, learning disabilities, epilepsy and Klinefelter syndrome. I just think he is one crazy dude who loves Eddie Stobart, drum and base and going to London.

LB died in a local NHS run short term treatment and assessment unit on July 4th 2013. He was found dead in the bath. There were five patients and a minimum of four members of staff on duty 24 hours a day. Investigations are underway continue (seemingly forever) into how this could have happened.

See summary tab above for more details (sorry, chaotic blog organisation reflecting life).

Abi (3)

The photo’s and drawings are mine unless otherwise specified. Liberal credits are sprinkled throughout, because everything is intertwined really.

All posts reflect my own, and only my own, personal views. And please don’t use any photos without permission. Oh, and last thing, if I’ve snapped you and you would like a copy, leave me a message here.

39 thoughts on “About

  1. I just love your blog… I pop over now and then for an update and a view of some pretty fine buses… or something equally enchanting. Thought I’d leave you a little note so you know I was here.

  2. Hi Laughing Boy. You may be entitled to Legal Aid for breach of privacy, trust, abuse etc. Does your mother have assets worth suing for? You don’t have to put up with this. Do you have any friends that could help? You are a young man. Reject this controlling voyeurism. try shrink4men Do not consent to being put on electronic display. And its drum and bass. As you know. Good luck mate. You’re going to need it.

  3. Hi, love the blog, am trying to follow you via WordPress reader but can only manage email follow – any ideas how? (Not very good at this blogging malarkey.) You may like my blog too – I’ll let you know if I do one on dual diagnosis as that’s always been my personal favourite niche of the drugs field.

  4. Hi Sara, I am a reporter for the Daily Mail and am very sorry to hear about what happened to your son.We would like to look into his case and tell LB’s story if this is something you would support?
    Please feel free to email me at inderdeep.bains@dailymail.co.uk if you would like to exchange
    numbers and discuss this. I understand this must be an incredibily difficult time for you and I sincerely hope you don’t mind me contacting you.

    • Hi Sara
      Im sian and I went to school with rosie and heard your tragic story after an article was posted on facebook.
      My Brother Matty has austism and epilepsy and reading your blog makes me just want to run and hug him and I know his reply will be ‘ no hug no’.
      I just want to wish you so very well on your campaign for justice. It is shocking and beyond heartbreaking what you have had to go through.
      I would also like to say how I admire how incredibly brave you all are to not hide from your grief and fight in his memory every day
      My thoughts are with you

  5. I am so sorry for your loss. I have read back your story and hurt for you. I just wanted to send you condolences. Worth nothing I know but I wanted them to come your way.

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  7. We have a 19 years old young man- learning difficulties etc etc. Came across your blog when researching the shit that it Personal Independence Payments. Just wanted to say how sad I am on reading your blog. We know what it takes (and what it takes out of you) to get a young man from birth to that age. I hope that life is kind to you from now on.

  8. theres more to it than has already been said.in that respect how come no emaiul address.weve got so much evidence that underpins the horrific situation than can be put here.theres massive corruption going on in hants.and throughout uk involving Coroners. Courts.Councils.Health Authorities..Police violent threats to us telling us to shut up about local religion/press/council/courts/mind/hosps/pals/ and others. Previous evidence was gathered over 12 yrs on foot in cent london;The list continues -D of H jeremy hunt. D of Injustice brennan. Dept Edu.Attorney General. Cameron and his constit office at Witney.Old Bailey. Magist Courts.PCA. Crown Prosecution. Social Serv. Census Office Vaux Br Rd. BBCtv and Radio4. Channel4.and on and on.
    We did the work cos we were told to stop state of the art work on major psych clients who had recd 20 yrs drugging and abuse. They needed and got 7 hours that addressed the issues that the drugs had not. We were told we were upsetting BUPA/ Psychiatrists.and a host of others who thet said needed the money. We nw have evidence of the coroners in Hants covering up in Winch Crown Court. The coroner nor the law firm he works for in partnership with Hants County Council BLAKE LAPTHORN wont or has not yet answered neither have loads more Coroners doing the same scams. Loads people killed by the police.Implicated also is Southamptons Royal Hosp and even S-hampton uni. WHERE IS YOUR EMAIL ADRESS PLEASE.John Raynham 01329841173 nearly all days/hours with some gaps as we cant sit near the phone and im dying of an illness like a maiisive allergy and cant get help.WE DONT NEED TO SAY WE CARE ABOUT YOUR EXPERIENCE IT GOES WITHOUT SAYING

  9. Hi — I really like your blog; I would like your permission to assign it as class reading for my disability studies course (Toronto). However, I have been reading your blog from Facebook friends’ posts and can’t seem to figure out how to get to the start of your blog, or the blog address, or link… sorry, can you help with this? Tanya

  10. Hi Sarah. I am part of CHANGE, a user led organisation for people with learning disabilities, We have been asked by the Local Government Association to create a discharge pack for ppeople with Learning disabilities leaving ATU’s, including information about their rights. As part of the project we are consulting with current patients, ex patients and carers about what they think should be included in the pack. It would be great to speak to you about your views my email address is erin@changepeople.org Thank you! Erin

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  12. Hi, so I have a piece of writing now about LB, Southern Health’s many failings, going on to look at latest inspection of Slade, staffing levels, stress and safety (or not) and this as a wider problem. Not sure yet where I’m going to put it but would like to illustrate it with an image of LB. If that’s ok, would you be able to send me one to use, please? Happy to send you latest draft of article first. My email: contact@wiseupaction.info. If you prefer not, no worries. Ta

  13. Hi Sara
    Just contacting you via your amazing blog in case you are away from your office and emails at this awful time.
    The Isle of Wight Safeguarding Adults Board would really like you to join us to speak at our Safeguarding Adults Conference on Tues March 2016 – we would also like to show the film. No need for immediate answer as you clearly have more than enough to deal with right now.
    Best of luck for next week – we will be following the inquest and tweeting.

  14. I just wanted to reach out. I have read so much of what is here after catching it on the news. What has happened to your wonderful boy and family just beggers belief. I am so so angry for you. I have followed your story with two seperate hats on as a learning disability nurse. And as a mother who is 7 months into the process of a complaint to sloven. From both parts my heart goes out to you. Currently my world is full of empty apologies, lies, broken promises, oh and of course a bucket load of policies being shoved at me. I just wanted to reach out to you. I am not sure why or what for. But here I am. Id welcome a chat or just a hi. I am feeling so frustrated but thankfully my children are fine and didn’t get hurt by the malpractice that went on. I cannot imagine dealing with sloven with what you have had to cope with as well. I am so so sorry this happened and is still happening.
    Naomi x

  15. Hello, you don’t know me but when I was a PGCE student at Oxford Brookes, we spent one day as a training “experience” in the school your son Connor went to in Oxford, and I had the privilege of observing a day’s schooling with him and his class. Connor was an amazing boy and his character stayed with me ever since. I was really struck by his wit and humour. He stayed with me for practically the whole day, even during break time.
    I was casually looking at Facebook today when the Guardian’s article appeared in my feed and I immediately recognised him from the photo. I was moved to tears. I just wanted to say that I am truly sorry for your loss, and I sincerely hope that you can find the justice and peace that you deserve. God bless.

      • Sara, you likely won’t remember me – I used to work at John Watson Kids Club (and the school too) a long time ago now (about 13/14 years ago). I came to your home and looked after your gorgeous kids a few times and loved it 🙂 Connor was one of my absolute favourite kids to work with and hang out with – so much personality and such a gentle, beautiful boy. I still think of him and talk about him now, he really stole a piece of my heart. I’ve only just discovered your blog and was devastated to read what happened to Connor. I’m so very sorry, I can’t even begin to imagine how devasted you all must be. Sending you all loads of love, Leonie xxxx

  16. Can you please contact me, I’m not good at teccy stuff. Can you find me on twitter under Brenda Prentice Brenius21i understand if you ‘follow” me I can pm you….?

    I could do with some help and advice…

  17. I saw you on BBC Breakfast this morning and coukd so empathise, though my experience was in a hospital with my father who had advanced dementia / Alzheimer’s & Lewy Body. Your comments about ‘a death by indifference’ was what happened to him. We had a meeting with the staff and like you and your son said they told us all the cganges they made but we’d already experienced broken promises of those so called improvements to care. They never apologised to us properly and just made excuses. Death by indifference just sums it all up. Prayers and best wishes to you and your family.

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  19. Thank you so much for sharing your experiences and those of LB. I ended up at your blog by clicking on some link that I thought would just be about some lighthearted and passing comments. I didn’t expect to spend hours getting to know LB, a quirky and funny youngster, and then the challenges as he became “adult”, and then the tragedy of his story. It’s an important story to help people understand those with autism and other differences, and understand the challenges and rewards they bring to their families and communities.

  20. I always read your blog, it makes me smile, it makes me want to cry……. my daughter took her life last year, for several years she was so ill, so many hideous units, I fought and fought with so called professionals, believe it or not, my local MP was and still is pretty proactive but all the rest….you name it, its the same soundbites and same crap, some well meaning people but I just dont have the energy at present. Every day is survival, her brother and sister are suffering the loss too.
    I just wanted to tell you, love the honesty, transparency and its so good you say it as it is. Im not campaigning , I can’t, cant do social media, this is the best I can! wont make a good judgement call, too overwhelmed with grief…. angry but totally behind you and just keep these blogs going.

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