and its not really because Ive been ill for a change. Dont get me wrong Ive not been well but other things have over shadowed my life.
Last year I had a DLA tribunal which I lost. Until this year I really wasnt well enough to do anything more than shut myself in my home and cry. This year however I found my anger. I wrote a letter to the heads of the government parties and the leader of my local council. I didnt expect a 'hey we got it wrong heres your money' reply but really wanted them to know how I felt and how Id been treated.
I had a couple of replies but nothing helpful until my local advise centre got in touch. The first phone call was a bad time. Id been away with family, couldnt think and ended up in tears and passing the phone to my dad. The second I wasnt too bad. Still cried but managed to explain that I didnt want help to appeal the tribunal as I had understood to appeal it had to be on a 'point of law' and even if I disagreed with proceedure I was sure the 'law' was right as it was done by a judge. Mainly I wanted to know where I went from here. Do I re-apply or am I blacklisted as a 'cheater'?
I was told to re-apply as the judge and doctor I had worked together on a regular basis and had a nice routine.
First I was asked if I was better, worse or the same as the time of renewal. I was then told I had to answer from the renewal time only. As I said I was worse this meant they could ask things after the renewal and say if I could do that when I was worse I could do it when I was better. To me I spent the whole tribunal being totally confused as to why I was being asked things after the date and what relevance they had as Id already been told that after the date was irrelevant.
I spent the whole tribunal in tears and getting more and more upset and distressed. The guy from the advise centre said if Id had a different judge and doctor I would probably have got DLA. Thats no help to me!!! The fact that I now know that different judges and doctors make different decisions just makes me angry. I had no choice on who heard my tribunal and all I know is I was treated like a lying cheating thief. It destroyed the limited confidence I had and basically sent me into what I can only call a 'breakdown'
I didnt see my doctor at the time for many reasons. I felt so useless and worthless I didnt want to leave the flat, I was scared about what the doctor might say, I was ashamed at how I couldnt cope, I was keeping up normal actions for friends and family and most of all I didnt want to admit how bad I actually was.
So now this time has passed and Ive been told to re-apply and Im scared!!! In my heart I know Im telling the truth about how my life is but I cant help that feel that as Im not an idiot and dont put myself in danger Im not helping myself. I believe in self help and self management but that goes against the DLA rules and by follwing that even though my life is far from normal no one cares!!!