If you have mental health problems and/or disabilities and you are unable to work, asking for some financial help can be SO difficult.
Firstly WE DON'T WANT TO BE ASKING FOR ANY.
Secondly WE DON'T TAKE THE DECISION LIGHTLY.
Thirdly WE HAVE TRIED EVERY OPTION BEFORE GETTING TO THIS POINT.
You finally brave it and send for the forms and they arrive, filling them in is a BIG task and not an easy one. Going over all your problems and the fine details certainly lowers your mood and wipes you out. So many times whilst you are filling it in you think 'fuck it', I am not doing this' but then you know you need too. The part that asks for supporting evidence, so you think right ok I will get copies and ask the GP for a letter. You assume that that will be done and it will all get sorted.....
NO, a lot of people get told they are not entitled and if they do not agree then appeal. Oh my what a process this is... You get sat in front of a Judge, Dr and disability specialist. Intimidating would be putting it mildly. Scary, nerve jangling and once again exhausting. All of which exacerbates your illness/s and BANG you are in a flare, bed ridden and more. At the back of your mind is the knowledge that you are deemed not that ill, you got no points, you are now having to prove your ill, made to feel like you are lying or not that sick.
It is a desperate horrible experience and you are at the mercy of three people who you are worrying do not validate your illnesses/s. You want to run if only you could, then come the bizarre and soul destroying questions.
Have you had a hoilday in the last twelve months?
Have you driven yourself anywhere?
What the hell is you having a holiday got to do with your illnesses severity?? So if you had the fortune to have had some family holiday time you cannot be ill?? So many questions and furniture placed to 'catch you out'. It is really one of the most horrible experiences I have been through and everytime that envelope drops on the mat for yet another 'are you still sick' form, well unless there have been some miracle cures since you last bothered me six months ago then yes still sick!
You are treated and questioned like a criminal instead of questioned and supported about how bloody hard things are how bloody well you are doing under the circumstances.
This really bothers me and it part of the reason for wanting to get more awareness out there and ending the bloody stigmas.
How have your experiences been?
Please comment and let us know.