I apologise to those of you who may have thought you had seen the last of my blogs but I have realised that while I can think I will always have something to say and a need to be heard, and I am afraid this blog may be just as contentious as the previous one that caused me problems!
You see, it was a comment that set me off yet again, it's a comment I have heard plenty of times before but it has played on my mind somewhat today.
"most people know someone who is fiddling the welfare state! Would you report them?" is the gist of it, said in many different ways but basically "would you report someone you suspected of cheating the benefits system?"
I must state here that I don't condone cheating or lying or claiming benefits falsely in any shape or form and of course those that do should be brought to justice, but what concerns me is that normal, ordinary everyday people are being encouraged to be snoops and medical experts. Could you tell a genuine person?
I could go through the invisible illnesses etc but thought I would highlight my point once again using my own situation.
You can look back at previous blogs if you wish where I have written about my medical condition in some detail to see why I claim ESA & DLA and am considered not fit for work.
But it struck me today that I write on twitter nearly every week that I go to the town with my mum on a Tuesday, what is to stop this from arousing suspicion?
If you were watching us you would see my husband drop us at the doors to the shopping mall, you would see me holding my mums arm as we walk slowly to our first stop, which incidentally is the cake shop! I limp and I need her arm for support but I expect we just look like mother and daughter holding each others arms.
You may not then see that the next place we go is BHS restaurant as by then I need to sit down. Here we sit and chat until it becomes too uncomfortable for me to sit any longer. All this to an outsider would look like perfectly normal behaviour wouldn't it? You may not notice that my mum cuts and butters my roll for me as I am unable to do so or that she supplies me with clean napkins as the effort can make me uncomfortably hot. We sit at the back as I am very conscious of what I am unable to do for myself so we must look like mother and daughter having a nice cuppa and a chat together.
Our next stop is Wilkinsons where I NEED to have a shopping trolley to lean on or I could never get round the half of the shop I can still manage. So to an onlooker I suppose I look like a normal shopper walking (ok limping) around the store. You see I don't have 2 heads, I haven't got limbs in plaster etc etc, you may see the limp but you won't see the curved spine or the damaged ankles,knees,hips, wrists, shoulders.....shall I go on? You probably won't see the look of pity, fear or disgust when the shop assistant has to take my money from my damaged hands or the fact that I now hold my purse open for them to drop change into so they don't have to try and avoid touching me.
After Wilkinsons I lean on the shopping trolley to help me walk back outside the mall and sit on the bench while mum goes to the other shops she needs to go to and gets the rest of her shopping. I call my husband after about 15/20 minutes to come and pick us up. He has to come from the car to help me walk back to it as by then nothing works.
Once safely home again I am unable to do anything at all for the rest of the day, the pain is too acute and my body just refuses to move at all. It takes me a couple of days to recover from Tuesday mornings outing and that is one reason that you will normally only find me out on that one day a week.
I will continue to accompany my mum to the town on a Tuesday for as long as I possibly can as it is our special time together and means so much to us both but if you saw me, heard me, watched me, without knowing my circumstances and my illness, would you consider reporting me?
- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad