I found my head and heart just couldn't stand the confusion, frustration and outright pain it is all causing me.
Am I being overly dramatic?
I don't believe I am when every day seems to bring a new threat to unsettle me, a new fear for my future to cope with and a new set of feelings/emotions that make me want to run and hide.
I have started to avoid twitter as many of my friends on there are feeling/suffering the same and I want to help,
I really want to do something, anything that will stop this victimisation of the sick/disabled/unemployed but what?
What can we do?
We have tried petitions, indeed the wowpetition is still ongoing and gathering pace every day and of course I am behind that 100% but it's not helping the here and the now.
We have e mailed/written/spoken to MPs,
I was constantly in touch with our MP for the first year or so, every time something new was thrown at me, every time I felt fear or confusion or revulsion at a new change, a new idea, a new stick with which to batter us I wrote to him, sent him links, sent him articles but my frustration just grew as he continued to parrot the party line and finally after a particularly odd conversation with him in which he accused me of 'believing I was the only one who cared' and 'being abusive' to him which I deny vehemently I stopped all contact as the tone had turned distinctly chilly between us.
And so I have retreated, not from the fight for justice, that will never happen, but from the daily/weekly noise making arena, in short I have found myself unable to shout and have Instead worried and fretted and helped others from the sidelines.
Those of you that know me will know we moved house in May, lovely as my new home is the stress and the added expense of moving has brought us to our knees.
Financially now I have an added worry as I know do many of us on benefits of where the next bill payment, shopping , hospital visit money will come from......life of Riley on benefits? Do me a favour!
I now have to find council tax and bedroom tax money every month on top of the escalating food prices, heating etc out of no extra benefits as this government in its wisdom decided we had it too easy!
I have written a few blogs about my medical condition etc so if you're interested please have a read but my condition means I will never be able to return to employment.
My GP, my consultants and even the ATOS assessor said so 3 years ago,
I was still placed in the WRAG group by DWP though and not knowing much about this 'new benefit' and not having been on sickness benefits previously I stayed in this group for a year.
Because I had worked for 25+ years I was on contribution based which as we now know means you should be fit to return to work in a year when your entitlement to ESA contribution based just stops!
Unfortunately for me ATOS and DWP were unable to perform that miracle and I wasn't cured after a year,
Infact after 3 months of fighting with them I was placed in the support group.
I have watched friends and fellow fighters get called back for assessment after assessment and so wasn't all that surprised when a year later they called me for re assessment.
I am still waiting for their judgement three months later,
when questioned ATOS Informed me they have 13 weeks in Which to look at my paperwork and forward it on to DWP with their recommendation.....
13 weeks of hell, 13 weeks of not knowing if I am going to have to fight again, 13 weeks of not knowing if my benefit will continue to be paid.....
Can this be right?
Is it right to leave sick/disabled vulnerable people waiting and wondering?
And what of the cost of continually re assessing us?
At first I would read the articles in the papers, watch the programmes on the television but it all seemed so biased against us, where was the balance?
Where was the uproar in the comments from society about how badly these things portrayed us?
Where was justice?
How could the government keep telling lies and not get stopped, not get challenged, not get shot down in flames?
Groups such as Sparticus and Wowpetition and DPAC and UKuncut and many others put out articles telling the truth, giving a balanced picture, asking questions but they were not given air time or print space.....the government really have got the media in their pockets.
Time and time again the public buys into it, scroungers, fraudsters, layabouts......
Our voices weren't heard, they were drowned out.
More voices joined ours, the shouting got louder, more Insistent so the government turned up the volume on their rhetoric......deserving and undeserving people???
The proof of what we are saying is all there, under your noses but no one is looking.
Why? Apathy? I'm alright Jack mentality?
I wish I knew and I wish you all understood how disheartening, how soul destroying, how very lonely it is when you feel unheard, uncared for by society.
If you're thinking 'gosh this is a self pitying defeatist blog from Penny' then I make no apology for this is how I am being made to feel by a government and a country I used to be proud of.