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Non state financial support for mental health

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nightofjoy

Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2013
Messages
14
Hi. I've suffered with crippling depression and anxiety for more than 30 years.

I've always worked (UK) when I could, and let the illness have it's time when I couldn't. I was a freelancer and paid reasonably well, so I was able to save when I was working to cover the time I was not.

As my conditions began to get worse around 10 years ago, I was unable to work as much, but was living alone, so I was eligible for benefits. I'd still take on work in the periods it cleared a little and allowed me to think, bits of freelance work here & there, and I worked at a bakery for a while. Everything was declared to the benefits office and while it was complicated, I didn't want to just go all-out on state support and give up. I've always paid my taxes and NI.

Eventually I found myself in a relationship, which proved to be a long term thing, and eventually we decided to move in together. It's my own fault for not doing my homework, but I simply didn't comprehend that if you are on benefits and you move in with somebody else, all financial support will stop. I mean I suppose I understood that perhaps the housing side of things might have to be adjusted, but I didn't imaging that all financial assistance would halt immediately, and either my partner would have to support me, or I'd be forced to return to work. Obviously the latter was the only option, and things have been going from bad to worse since then.

I'm in the situation not that I know that I'm going to have to give up work permanently in the next few months, at least for a stretch. My health is going down hill and I can't see a way out that doesn't make things as bad or worse.

My mental health issues demand time. They always have. I'm not saying I'm a slave to them, but I do need time just to be ill sometimes or my thoughts turn dark very quickly. This means that my only likely solution is to move out of the house we rent together and live alone so that I can claim benefits again, and try to restore some balance. Whilst this will take the pressure of my depression and anxiety as medical conditions, it will likely result in the end of my relationship with my girlfriend, and without her, I fear the sadness from that will result in my depression escalating to a point I can't cope with.

So I'm caught between a rock and a hard place. Live a life I don't want to remove the pressure of working full-time and making my depression and anxiety better than they are now, but then risk things getting worse because I'll no longer have love in my life.

The future terrifies me and it's becoming more and more real by the day, I'm at breaking point.

I haven't wasted anyone's time on here by going into my medical history. Yes I take a combination of medications, and yes I've been to therapists and doctors thousands of times over my 48 years.

Does anyone have any ideas? I did wonder if there might be any non-state trusts or organisations out there that can offer financial support or grants, being first referred by my doctor of course. A long shot and almost certainly not i'd imagine.

I need to get my head back on track before I have a breakdown.

Thanks to whoever is listening.
 
hicks

hicks

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In a galaxy, far far away..
That's a tough situation. The question I have to ask, is your partner able, and prepared to support you through your bad times? I tend to think that being in a relationship will be better for you, rather than being alone, and not in a state to work.
 
daffy

daffy

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Found this on an advice site. May be off some help.

My partner stays the night a lot but we haven’t moved in together…
Just because your partner stays the night with you, even if they stay most nights, it doesn’t mean you are living together. If your partner still has a home somewhere else where he or she pays bills and keeps their things, then s/he clearly doesn’t live with you.

If you have been contacted by a benefits office because they believe you are living with your partner when they haven’t actually moved in, you will need to show them that your partner doesn’t live with you. Usually the easiest thing to do is to prove s/he lives somewhere else. Give the benefits office evidence of any rent, mortgage, council tax, or other bills s/he pays at their home. If your partner has a driving license or is the registered owner of a car, these documents are excellent evidence as you are legally required to keep the address on them up to date. Evidence of important post like phone bills or bank statements that are sent to their home address will also help.

When you give the agency the evidence, get a receipt or if you are posting it get a certificate of posting from the post office (this is free). If your benefits have been stopped, ask for them to be reinstated. Ask how long that will take and make a note of it, along with the name of the person you spoke to and the time and date. If your benefits aren’t reinstated by the date you were given, phone the agency and chase it up.
 
Lunar Lady

Lunar Lady

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Mar 19, 2019
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UK
Nightjoy, did you give up your own home to move in together?

Honestly - most unmarried couples get around this by maintaining separate addresses. I think the rule is still that a partner can stay over for four nights a week and it's not deemed as a committed relationship where he assumes financial responsibility for you. That's not much help if you've given up your home, though.

If your partner is not in a position to financially support you, you might want to think about setting yourself up independently again. It sounds like a permanent relationship - but you need a safety net and security if things went wrong anyway. That doesn't mean you have to be apart all the time - it seems a better solution than you buckling under the pressure of having to work or straining your relationship.

Wishing you all the best .
 
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nightofjoy

Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2013
Messages
14
That's a tough situation. The question I have to ask, is your partner able, and prepared to support you through your bad times? I tend to think that being in a relationship will be better for you, rather than being alone, and not in a state to work.
Hi. I know but I'm not in a state to work now. I'm completely overwhelmed by everything.

My girlfriend couldn't afford to support me and I'd never ask or expect her, it's not that kind of relationship.
 
Lunar Lady

Lunar Lady

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Can I just add:

If you are married - that's legally acceptance of you being a financial unit and you have the security and (hopefully) permanence that marriage brings. Personally, I wouldn't want to be beholden to any man to look after me unless there was a ring on my finger. x
 
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nightofjoy

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Joined
Nov 16, 2013
Messages
14
We're not married. Before we moved in together I was living in a shared house, out of a single room, and most of the time even that was too much for me. I was receiving partial benefits for housing and living, because I was only working part time.

I gave up my place in the house and we moved in together. I thought my benefits would need to be adjusted, but I didn't know everything would be cut altogether.

I'm sick of going to the doctor's and being asked, "Why did you sign yourself off sickness and go back to work?". It seems crazy now, I was never given permission or advised that I was fine to go back to work full-time, I was just sort of swept along with it. We moved in, my benefits stopped, and all I could do was take on more work to pay my way. But it's reaching breaking point now and I doubt we'd survive me moving out. There just doesn't seem to be a version of life i can be happy in, or a way out of the situation.

We recently moved from our flat in the city (North UK) to a house in a town an hour away quieter & cheaper, for the same price (as the flat), but we're now both tied in to that move. If I left, she couldn't afford to continue living in the house by herself. We've paid deposits and bonds, signed contracts, and she's just started a new job in the new town. We're cemented into our situations, and it's suffocating me.
 
Lunar Lady

Lunar Lady

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I don't know what type of benefits you received - and my experience is limited to Universal Credit. I'm aware that with UC, there is no closing and opening claims - it's a very fluid system. If you have a period of work, you let them know and they adjust or suspend monies accordingly without any rigmarole of stopping and starting claims. I have received Job Seeker's Allowance
and during that time, I've picked up temporary work and been signed off as unfit to work - the money was just adjusted either up or down and I found their system very easy and user-friendly.

It might be worth your while to make an appointment with the Citizen's Advice Bureau for advice or find out if your local council has a department called 'Welfare Rights' - they're very helpful and will find out what money you are entitled to and where you can apply for funds through extenuating circumstances etc.

I don't know if your girlfriend is receiving a generous salary - but if you were on benefits before, you can re-apply for UC as a couple. The calculations will be based on your joint household income.
 
Lunar Lady

Lunar Lady

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Found a link with some info:

 
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nightofjoy

Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2013
Messages
14
Hi. I haven't had access to Universal Credit, it wasn't rolled out when I was last claiming, it was ESA back then... almost four years ago.

I'll look into contacting the Citizen's Advice Bureau, seems obvious but with everything going on in my head, it's hard to think at the moment. Thanks.
 
Lunar Lady

Lunar Lady

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When you feel up to it - give them a call. They are very friendly and helpful.

The Universal Credit helpline
If you need help with your claim, call the Universal Credit helpline free on:
Telephone: 0800 328 5644
Textphone: 0800 328 1344
8am - 6pm, Monday to Friday (closed on bank and public holidays). Calls are free.


Have a break from worrying now - switch off for a while and just feel hopeful that there is a way through this (and I'm sure there is) :hug:
 
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