I have had fibromyalgia (plus other related illnesses) 15 years when the benefits all changed I was put into ESA Working Group,I couldn’t cope with the constant phone calls from the job centre asking me to attend meetings weekly my depression got really bad and I didn’t want to leave the house or talk to anyone.
I appealed this and lost the appeal. The doctor was very patronizing and belittling, he would not let my husband help me and he wanted me to remember how I felt 6 months previously to know why my health was worse. He asked me how my husband’s health was too. He had recently had a stroke and had angina. Which I now realise is why I couldn’t cope with the pain and my help was so bad because I was having to helping to look after my husband.
The doctor completely ignored this and he made me feel like I was nothing, he said why do you not want to work there is nothing wrong with you. He asked did I get any other benefits and I said I got DLA and he said how on earth did you get that. I left in tears. I have since got PIP enhanced on both but the way in which I was treated caused more problems to my health, I no longer wanted to leave the house, and even now, I still only go out when someone is with me, and this is very seldom, I don’t want to talk to people and worry about the future, my husband is unable to claim any benefits, he tried to claim for PIP and was told they understand you are ill but you do not fit the criteria.
This illness has completely changed my life I was outgoing, worked full time even when my children were young I worked, but the way I was treated by the doctor at my tribunal mad me feel like I was scum and that all I was after was money. I was working at a job I loved when I had to give up due to my health. The way this government is treating the sick and disabled is disgusting. I haven’t left the house in months as I do not want other people to judge me like the doctor did.
I did try to appeal about the appeal but was told by another judge that if I continued with my complaint I would be causing the Doctor to lose his job and he would have no income at the time I decided to stop the appeal but I wish I had gone ahead, the Doctor didn’t care that he had left my husband and I without any money. I always thought that if I got ill and was unable to work that I would be entitled to help, after all I had worked since I was 16 and paid into a system. Now I worry continually about what the future holds for both of us.