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Possibly sensitive question about DLA

(32 Posts)
EllaBellaWella Fri 11-Apr-14 11:33:09

Namechanged as some friends MN and I don't want this associated with my usual NN.

Dd(8) has AS. I have 2 other dc, one older, one younger.
Life is tricky, with many meltdowns. Dd needs very close supervision most of the time at home. Life is difficult for her dsis and Db, as they only ever seem to be with either dh or me, while dd mostly has undivided attention/supervision from one of us.

The SENCO at school suggested that we try to apply for DLA. She mentioned it could be used for dd to do some after school activities so that dc 1 and 3 can have a break, and also have some time without the inevitable background of a meltdown in progress.

Financially we are sort of stable, both on low wages, so have to run to a very strict budget which doesn't allow for extras, so any extra curricular activities are out of the question.

I stupidly mentioned this to my dm. She took a long time to accept that dd had AS, is now generally supportive, but mentioning DLA was like a red rag to a bull.
Under no circumstances should we (and these are her words) consider that dd has a disability. Under no circumstances should we scrounge off the state when all we need to do is man up and be better parents so that our other dc's lives aren't affected by dd.

So, quite apart from reeling at her harsh words (although we know we need to find better ways to deal with things, and we need to pester school to follow through with different strategies), are we being unreasonable to even consider DLA?
We didn't really know anything about dLA before the SENCO mentioned it, now I feel like some sort of frauds term even though the closest I've got to claiming is reading the cerebra guide.

PolterGoose Fri 11-Apr-14 11:44:31

Please apply, if dd's needs aren't great enough she won't get it, it really is that simple. Tbh dd is disabled whether she gets DLA or not. Just do it, your mum is wrong.

Having a child with a disability does cost more. My ds costs more to feed, clothe and entertain, before I even start to buy stuff that helps therapeutically.

coppertop Fri 11-Apr-14 11:54:31

I would apply for DLA.

It sounds as though (and apologies if I'm wrong) that your dm is more concerned with how she thinks this might affect herself. If you receive DLA then she has to face up to the fact that her grandchild has a disability and that her daughter receives benefits.

It would be interesting to know whether she considers David Cameron to be a scrounger. After all, he claimed DLA for his own son.

The DLA will directly benefit your dd, and indirectly benefit the whole family.

EllaBellaWella Fri 11-Apr-14 12:05:28

Thankyou both.
Yes, dm is very concerned with how things appear. Having a grandchild with aspergers was not on her "to do" list hmm

I hadn't even thought of therapeutic things, there are books and things that we think may help, but we've written them off completely as they just don't fit into our budget.

2old2beamum Fri 11-Apr-14 12:18:47

Please apply and ignore you DM it is you and your children that matters.
My toxic stepmother was appalled re DLA "no one in our family has a disability" and our DS was adopted by us!

EllaBellaWella Fri 11-Apr-14 12:30:27

I've rung up and ordered a claim form.
I don't think I'll tell my mum!

If she gets DLA are there any conditions as to what it can be spent on? Would we need to prove that it's gone on therapeutic things?

PolterGoose Fri 11-Apr-14 12:39:58

There are no conditions, you can spend it however you choose.

FanjoForTheMammaries Fri 11-Apr-14 12:44:41

Just do it and don't tell her.

Makes life easier all round.

EllaBellaWella Fri 11-Apr-14 12:46:23


2old2beamum Fri 11-Apr-14 12:47:29

You could buy a mallet to hit your DM with your 1st week's allowance (sorry) if you want!!

Ikeameatballs Fri 11-Apr-14 12:51:41

Definitely make a claim!

EllaBellaWella Fri 11-Apr-14 12:53:36

Ha 2old, that would be tempting grin

coppertop Fri 11-Apr-14 13:33:20

Good luck with the claim form. Ask away on the SN board if you need any help. smile

EllaBellaWella Fri 11-Apr-14 13:39:08

Is it difficult to fill in? I'm useless with forms!

PolterGoose Fri 11-Apr-14 13:44:37

It's not difficult, more upsetting at writing page after page of your child's difficulties.

I fill in ds's by hand, I write in the boxes and usually on every spare inch of the page. I send every report, IEPs, every bit of evidence that backs up ds's needs.

Follow the Cerebra guide, it's essential.

EllaBellaWella Fri 11-Apr-14 13:52:46

Thanks Polter.

coppertop Fri 11-Apr-14 13:54:01

It's difficult in the sense that you have to write negatively about your child and focus on the things that they can't do.

It's hard to write page after page of "Dd is unable to do X" and "When dd gets upset she does XYZ". Instead you find yourself wanting to add positive things just so that you don't feel as disloyal.

EllaBellaWella Fri 11-Apr-14 13:54:50

Do they need to meet dd?
She is an expert at masking her difficulties to the point where several people have never seen her as anything but normal. She's saves it all for home (oh joy!)

EllaBellaWella Fri 11-Apr-14 13:55:30

Copper, that does sound depressing sad

coppertop Fri 11-Apr-14 13:59:41

They won't need to meet her. They go by the evidence and reports that you send with the application, and sometimes contact either the school or the Paed if they want any extra information.

It's a horrible form but the difference the money will make to your family will make it worthwhile.

PolterGoose Fri 11-Apr-14 13:59:58

No, it's all paper based.

My tactic is to set aside a day to do it when I'll be home alone, before that day I make copies of all reports etc and have them ready, then I fill it all in and take a copy. I package up the DLA form with all the copies of reports and post it special delivery. I put my copy of the form in a sealed envelope and don't look at it again until renewal (or if I had to appeal).

Then forget it.

You could plan something fun for you and dd for after you've done it.

EllaBellaWella Fri 11-Apr-14 14:04:20

Sorry, what do you mean by report?

PolterGoose Fri 11-Apr-14 14:10:26

Do you have reports from the various assessments which led to her diagnosis? Statement and/or IEPs and reviews? Reports following contact with ASD outreach, OT, SALT, EP?

EllaBellaWella Fri 11-Apr-14 14:13:42

Ah yes, of course blush

ouryve Fri 11-Apr-14 14:14:25

Ignore your mum - and it's probably best not to discuss finances with her, any more. It's money that your DD is entitled to.

Your DD can't be motivated by the things that motivate NT kids. Her social skills and emotional maturity are behind that of a NT 8 yo. She needs a lot more supervision than a NT 8yo. That's a disability.

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