William and I first met over 6 years ago. William was being supported by another organisation. C-Change was going to begin working with William and I was introducing myself and the organisation.
William shared his support with others in a congregate living setting. He had his own flat, had a tenancy, was not under any statutory restrictions.
During our first conversation William asked me an unexpected question. He said ‘Can I have bearded dragon?’
My first question back to William was,’why are you asking me that William?’
He told me that he had previously asked if he could get a bearded dragon. He had been told to get a goldfish. If he could prove he could look after a goldfish, he might then be able to get a bearded dragon.
For the avoidance of doubt, William had never expressed an interest in having a goldfish!
There is a lot of power and discrimination loaded into the assertion that William, an adult, be expected to prove he can look after a goldfish, he never wanted, before ‘being allowed’ to get the bearded dragon he had set his heart on.
William got his bearded dragon.