Finally went to that Health care game jam.
First of all
Previous game jam and maker-thons I've done you start working ASAP. You get here, you get a team and BOOOM you make stuff. I got there at 9am. We didn't start actually designing until 4pm.
We needed speeches, and more speeches, and team building. During the Pitch your project part, they actually stopped in the middle for a small speech I swore so loudly. "FUCK can we get going!"
I just wanted to work. Can't I just make stuff? I don't need to be inspired, I need to work.
FINALLY we get to work. I got a single person to join my team. She is lovely.
We are making a game to explain how to go to the gynaecologist, that's her area of expertise and my patient experience.
While we were trying to plan out our project people kept coming up to us and trying to help us.
I really need to learn how to politely decline. I humour people for way too long.
"Oh you should join another team"
"Can I introduce you?"
"I don't think you should make this project for that age group."
"This would be great for kids."
"You'd capture that whole mommy market."
CHILDREN CHILDREN CHILDREN
OHHHH WHAT ABOUT THE CHILDREN????
So much of my time went to explaining "NO I am not making a kid's game. No games aren't just for kids. I am making a game for adults because we have NO one to explain this stuff to us. We don't have parents to protect us or do the research for us."
"Ya, but illness is so much harder on children. Like how do you tell a kid they have cancer?"
"How do you tell an adult they have cancer?"
"Well that's different, it's scarier and harder on children."
Me: "The children's version can be an expansion but for this project, we aren't working with kids. Moving on."
I'm gonna to be a complete asshole here.
100% asshole. Are you ready?
It is not harder on kids to be sick. Children who have families that care about them will be taken care of. They will have someone to hold their hand, to give hugs, to be positive, to worry for them, to do all the stressful things. Children are lucky because they get to focus on being sick. It's okay if they cry or are angry or don't understand.
Adults don't get the luxury of just being sick. No one held my hand. No one told me it would be okay. No one helped me. No one was there to give me comfort. No one took me to my appointments and did all the administrative stuff. I had to do all the scary stuff by myself. I didn't have time to take care of myself because I had to take care of my fucking boyfriend. Or I had to comfort a family member because it was too difficult for them. I couldn't be honest about how I felt because it was too hard for everyone else. I couldn't just be sick, because I had to go to work. I had to pretend everything was okay. That is hard.
We are more empathetic towards children because we think children shouldn't get sick. Parents, their relatives, the medical staff it's hard on them. For the most part people like children, and they are generally our weakness. Childhood illness appears more difficult because we have compassion for children, whereas we don't for adults.
It's unfortunate they get to experience a part of life usually reserved for adults, and that really sucks. But I don't think children are the only people who can suffer when they are sick.