Social skirmishes

Social work student and reality TV “star” Katarina Flapp on her week

I’ve always been very healthy. The company that makes Lucozade comes to me for energy. I do it all – step, aerobics, boxercise.

This is partly why I was selected to appear on reality TV programme Thick and Thin – putting girls with “intellectual desolation” (whatever that is) through their paces. I didn’t win but I lived the dream.

However, last week it all started to go wrong. Catching up on the lecture notes that I have missed for my social work degree, I suddenly felt very tired.

Recalling a particularly brilliant episode of Loose Women (ITV’s insightful female-fronted lunchtime chat show), I wondered if I might have myalgic encephalomyelitis – ME. My Latin – despite the extra private tuition – is not great (mea culpa) but, given the last six letters, it is clearly an elitist disease, targeting the gifted, endowed and blessed. It really could be ME.

I asked around the office where I was doing my social work placement to see if anyone had a phone number for a local GP I could talk to about my condition. Sadly, no one was on first names with anyone in the medical profession – so much for last term’s lecture on the importance of multi-agency working.

No one really had time for sympathy either – they claimed to be “too busy to talk”. So much for this being a caring profession.

Rosie Warlock is on holiday. E-mail your anecdotes and observations to


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