I get asked a lot of the same questions from different people and have to type the same things out over and over which makes my fatigue and pain so much worse, plus it’s a bit annoying to have to keep explaining myself over and over.
So I decided to make a FAQ on here! I will keep this updated regularly.
Q: How much do you get a month
A: I get a total of just over £300 a month before any outgoings which is horrific and not enough to live off so I struggle every month! My medication alone totals £206 a month which I have to had to crowdfund some of as I can’t afford it but need it to live!
Q: Have you tried looking what benefits you can get?
A: Yes I have (many times over many years) and I get the only one I qualify for which is PIP.
I don’t get anything else as it is either I haven’t paid enough NI credits or because I don’t live alone, their finances get taken into account. This means I can’t get ESA, UC, housing benefit etc.
I have researched it all and spend many hours over the years trying and fighting but you can only apply for what you are eligible for, even with the ridiculous rules.
Q: Have you spoke to a benefits advisor/ MP/DWP
A: Yes I have spoken to numerous benefit advisors, citizens advice, my MP many times, the DWP hundreds of times and even parliament twice! I’ve now spent YEARS fighting but there is nothing I can do.
Q: Have you tried benefit entitlement checkers like Turn2Us
A: Yes many times, but as I said, I don’t qualify for anything else or I would be claiming it. I am excluded usually because I haven’t paid enough NI credits or because I don’t like alone and their finances get taken into account. If you go to the gov.uk site and read the benefit requirements, you will see what I mean.
Q: Do you get ESA?
A: Even though I can’t work and am disabled with numerous chronic illnesses, I don’t qualify due to their rules and requirements which is ridiculous. Basically the fact I worked part time for as long as I could, rather than to claim benefits early, means that I have paid National Insurance so I don’t qualify for ESA.
It has been years now, it is not for lack of trying, it is that you have to meet their requirements exactly or like me, you don’t get a penny!
New style ESA is the only ESA for new people now which is contribution based. Income based ESA is now replaced by Universal Credit which I can’t get either as it takes into account your households income. As I share a house as I can’t afford rent on £300 a month, their income gets taken into account which is ridiculous.
I cannot get ESA or UC hence am on just over £300 a month total income.
Q: Have you tried phoning them as you should get ESA if you are disabled
A: As above! Yes, many times. I can’t get it as per above.
Q: You are wrong, I get ESA and I am disabled
A: As above! I am not wrong. Read the site, read the restrictions and read what I wrote here.
Q: Do you have family to help?
A: My parents, grandparents etc are all dead and I have no siblings or aunts/uncles/cousins etc, there is just me.
Q: Why don’t the DWP help you more?
A: They have specific eligibility and if you don’t meet all, you don’t qualify. It’s that simple.
I can’t afford rent anywhere in the country, not even council house rent as I just get £300 a month. That means no landlord. I live with someone and pay towards bills, my medication and my food etc. Their income gets taken into consideration as well! That’s why it’s so ridiculous. The government is Tory so it’s unlikely to ever change.
Q: Have you tried cannabis?
A: Yes I am legally prescribed it and it works well (actual cannabis, not CBD!), but I can’t get it on the NHS for pain and I have to get it from a private doctor which costs hundreds a month so I have to crowdfund it!
I am currently crowdfunding on JustGiving to be able to afford it for up to a year as there is nothing else on the NHS and my pain is getting to a 10 again.
Q: Have you thought about buying <insert anything here>
A: I have £300 income a month before bills, I don’t have the money for anything! Not even something cheap!!
Q: Have you tried <insert anything here for my chronic illnesses>
A: Yes I have tried literally everything over the actual decades I have had these conditions and no it doesn’t work (full list on my about me page). I have tried everything on the NHS as well and am on the last and strongest painkiller available!
Q: How can you afford cannabis from a private doctor for your chronic pain?
A: I can’t!! I am relying on help from kind people. I don’t have family and I can’t work so I really do need help from anyone who can spare even a few pounds/dollars.
If you want to help, please do! Check out my support me page which also has info on my medical crowdfund