What to expect when reading bi-polar wife

Thoughts and feelings of living with bi-polar as a wife, mother, and person in the world.

Wednesday, 7 December 2016

Attempting recovery

I've not blogged for a few weeks as I have been attempting a personal recovery revolution. Turns out mental health services are so ridiculously stretched that unless I am trying to end my life, the wait for help is 2 years. I threw a minor tantrum at my mental health service, the first of my entire secondary care career, which has resulted in a few sessions of schema work/domain work being offered (To help challenge blueprint behaviours entrenched from early life) and an agreement that I should go on the waiting list for psychotherapy.

I discussed this with my GP, who, after also throwing a minor tantrum about the NHS and mental heath care himself, signed me off work for another 3 months to pursue self-help courses at recovery college. These will be anxiety management, the role of comedy in recovery and somantics. I'll be less stressed telling jokes about suicide in a flexible muscle stance!

I have also had the joy of my ESA being suspended this week. They won't pay you if your sick note doesn't arrive either in advance of the end of your last one, or the day after. You cannot get a sick note from a GP in advance. Also, post to the DWP takes 3 weeks to get to the right department. I ended up cashing in Ian's 2p jar to pay for parking, driving on fumes to Leicester, sat in the jobcentre plus office for 90 minutes, and got is scanned and sent via email encryption. They grilled me about my identity, why my kids weren't on the system, am I a single parent and why am I not receiving any other benefits, why didn't I get my note in on time and no I cannot tell you why your capability assessment information hasn't yet been processed... since August. I will take a plastic bag to sit on next time. The place is filthy.  I then had to come home and wait for a phone call to clarify my identity again, and discuss whether or not to "Unsuspend" my claim and pay me. They decided YES, but it could take 24 hours. The mind boggles. They have shame and degradation down to a fine art.

I also got a tax bill. Apparently at some point, I earned a fraction over the limit of the basic earnings, therefor, I needed to be taxed on any other income, in this instance, ESA. Yes, taxed on my benefits. So I have to pay £328 in April.

I'm sorry your brain is experiencing technical problems. Please allow us to shaft you in as many ways as possible to help you reach the suicidal rock bottom required for treatment, at which point we might assist you.

So here are my achievements for the month of November and early December :
Not killing anyone in a government office or health profession
Cleaning the fridge
Washing the car by hand and cleaning out the inside
Perfecting cookie making
Not using the C word half as much as I would really like to
Being really pushy with services - so not me!
Attending recovery college and planning new courses
Surviving an argument with Ian - think it's about the 3rd one we've had in 17 years!
Still parenting with compassion when the kids are like Regan from the exorcist
Attempting to live the spiritual life in pretty challenging scenarios

It's not strictly rock 'n' roll but it's a damn site better than being bullied by the Vicar from hell or feeling that I cannot carry on living. Actually, I'm a very lucky girl.