Dear DWP………

The real impact on real people’s lives………..

Ok, so now you can smile, now you can place a tick against another statistic you’ve won, after all we are just a number to you – a number to win or lose.
But what effect on the real person behind the statistic – what price do you place on people’s lives?

I consider myself to be a strong person and you crushed me for a while, so well done, you achieved your outcome. I won’t appeal as I couldn’t face that whole process again. My life is difficult enough without this on going battle. So, much to the disappointment of many, I wave the white flag to bring an end to this unnecessary stress to me and my daughters – oh, yes…..had you forgotten that your actions affect far more than the claimant? It impacts on the lives of those around them as well……

So what type of people do this job? Are they so desperate for work that they’ll take something where the main aim is to demoralise and twist the information before them in order to meet KPI’s? I can’t imagine succumbing to such a role in life.But who knows what role people might take if they too are desperate….

I’d love to meet one of their ‘high performers’ over a cuppa tea and hear their side and in turn allow them to hear mine – even more so, I’d love to meet the person that wrote to me, face to face – after all, they’ve never met me; they don’t know the reality of the decision they made and the effect the demoralising words had on the recipient. I was just an invisible number to them……

If the clue isn’t in the title as to what this benefit is really for – i.e. Personal Independence payment – payment to allow you to remain independent – then you need to change the title. Because right now, because of the comments I received, people who live alone with dementia, will never qualify, because by the very nature that we live alone, we immediately fail. We can never meet the qualifying criteria because we have to survive and manage somehow. We can be very creative because we have to be – we don’t have the luxury of someone living with us.
Seems a crazy title for a payment whereby you have to be ‘malnourished’ and totally dependant on others, unable to find ways of doing anything for yourself.

As someone said on Twitter “Get a grip and get real’ DWP……

But most of all – We’re not just a statistic…..please treat us as individuals and not relish the opportunity to make our situation even more depressing than it already is…..

You broke me for a while but now I’m back, however,  I wonder how many lives you’ve shattered beyond repair……..?

Dear ‘Virtual’ friends

A BIG thank you to you all for your kind comments, emails and Tweets – they were all so appreciated and gratefully received.

AND of course – thank you to my wonderful daughters for simply being there……

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About wendy7713

On the 31st July 2014 I was diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer’s. I may not have much of a short term memory anymore but that date is one I’ll never forget. I’m 58 years young, live happily alone in Yorkshire, have 2 daughters and I’m currently still in full time employment in the NHS. However, I’m now in the process of taking early retirement to give me a chance of enjoying life while I’m still me. I've started this blog to allow me, in the first instance, to write all my thoughts before they’re lost. If anyone chooses to follow my ramblings it will serve as a way of raising awareness on the lack of research into Alzheimer's. It will hopefully convey the helplessness of those diagnosed with dementia, as there is no cure – the end is inevitable. However, I’m also hoping I can convey that, although we've been diagnosed, people like me still have a substantial contribution to make; we still have a sense of humour; we sill have feelings. I’m hoping to show the reality of trying to cope on a day to day basis with the ever-changing environment that dementia throws at those diagnosed with the condition. What I want is not sympathy. What I want is simply to raise awareness.

29 thoughts on “Dear DWP………

  1. Dearest Wendy, I work with people in the mental health field and your story is one I hear everyday. People DO NOT want to be dependent, but the system seems to want to keep them dependent because they know the energy that they put into just surviving and then feeling like a burden to their families will keep them from telling the truth about the system. They do not want the “child” to pronounce that “the Emperor has no clothes”!
    And that is what we do…..we continue to tell the truth. Maybe not in a loud voice (like in the voice of that child), but as anyone can tell you who has been in a room of children, collectively they can get VERY loud!
    Even though I exist across the pond, please let me know what we can do to support you and those in your country who are “finding their voice”. As “older” women, we tend to be not seen or invisible and then add on the issue you are dealing with, we are often NOT HEARD either. We are marginalized and condescended to. Please know that you have sisters on the same journey, different paths from all over the planet.
    My daughter now lives in the UK and I do hope to be able to come visit her sometime this next year. I too, am reaching “the age” where she and my son are thinking about my independence (little do they know MY PLANS to live for a long time!) and they are coming from a place of love. There may come a time where I will need to accept their gift to help me out and I need to be a gracious receiver so they can grow as adults in being loving givers.
    Know that I am so grateful to receive your wisdom in this blog. You and your daughters are in my heart. I hope someday we may be able to meet.
    Be Well!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Well said Wendy. It’s absolutely ridiculous that you didn’t qualify for the Personal Independence Payment. I can understand you don’t want to pursue this at all but surely a letter to the Secretary of State??

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I totally understand why you don’t wish to take this any further dear Wendy. It really is stressful and upsetting. My best regards to you from Liverpool, where the sun has just come out! 🙂 Bit of sunshine always seems to make things feel better!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. My sympathies are with you, Wendy. Life can be so unfair. We had to fight for everything for my beloved dad and were ultimately successful but such a stressful process.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. I can really empathise with your situation and fully understand your decision. You appear to be being punished for your resoursefulness.The DWP (and this government) appear to be totally unable to comprehend the devastating effects of their decisions.
    I have MS and “should” be claiming ESA as I am unable to work and my state pension won’t pay out for another 5 years. I have been trying to summon up the courage to start a claim but am very fearful of the effect on my well being should I not be successful. Stress has a direct impact on my MS and my life is difficult enough without risking exposing myself to the cruel decisions that are so frequently made. Meanwhile I have a monthly income of £75 from an occupational pension and am fortunate enough to be able to rely financially on my husband for now but he is retiring so I can’t afford to delay claiming indefinitely.
    I wish you well and very much enjoy reading your blog.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. You are brave heroic etc etc and it’s deeply frustrating to have to battle these monolithic establishments with faceless paper pushers that confound at every step, however, they are following protocols and procedures much like you in your career. It doesn’t excuse them it doesn’t make them less human. It is their job. You are either a people person or a paper pusher and the DWP is definitely not run by people persons. Heartfelt sympathies coming your way. Have you tried getting a supporting letter from your named nurse? Lx

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Hello Damian

    Could you give me a ring sometime to suit you?

    I didn’t want to ring when Esther is regaling you with all her news.

    Love as always Barbara

    Sent from my iPad

    Like

  8. So sorry to hear this Wendy. You are right, you could do without these battles; they are demoralising and can crush you. Sounds like you’ve revived your spirits. Well done. But really, really sorry. x

    Liked by 1 person

  9. So relieved to hear from you again Wendy. Did you send this letter or was it just for you to express your feelings?

    Such crushing news. I am still in shock that you have been denied the money you need to remain independent, the one thing you need and hold onto as you don’t won’t to rely on others, and yet you are being punished for trying to remain independent. I just don’t get it.

    It is such a cruel disease but this seems even more cruel.

    Martin x

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Dear Wendy, I’m so sorry to hear this news. I totally understand why you can’t face putting yourself through an appeal, but do send the letter. The politicians need to know the misery their cruel policies are inflicting on good, honest people. It makes me SO ANGRY, because the system is designed to have exactly the effect it’s had on you – to crush people and deter them from appealing. The stats do seem to show that the vast majority of appeals succeed, but at what price to people’s sanity and wellbeing? Sending all my best wishes and a virtual hug to you. x

    Liked by 2 people

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