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help please.

(25 Posts)
Gangsta Mon 17-Oct-11 20:36:05

Single parent, Xh (ds's father) disappeared three and a half years ago. He pays nothing, I don't know where he is.

After getting myself together a bit I started working self-employed. Claim 25 hours a week working and child tax credit.

6 weeks ago had a breakdown. packed in work. living on savings since. Have no family - either my own or ex'in laws as they blanked us when exh ran away.

Problem is ds goes to cm three days a week and I don't know what to do about tax credits. I want to tel them I'm not working now but don't know how to say I am ill so can't work and actually can't face going to gp as scared of beign referred to ss or something.

But if I tell them then I will lose my working tax credits.... and then can't afford for DS to go to CM..which in turn will make me more ill. I am sick with worry and upset.

I probably dont qualify for job seekers or incapacity as have savings. yes I could spend all my savings but then ds will have nothing and as he has no relations and no dad then that will be shit for him.

tbh I feel like topping myself as am exhausted and ill.

any help or just a conversation about how crap i have managed it all after ex disapeared will be good.

Gangsta Mon 17-Oct-11 20:37:49

I wikll put this in legal and relationships too as I badly need advice and support. thanks

wannabestressfree Mon 17-Oct-11 21:26:55

Go and chat to advisor you may entitled to more than you think and you would still get child tax which would go up. I had a year off because of illness {crohns disease} and spoke to advisor at the job centre and got lots of help.

Gangsta Mon 17-Oct-11 21:49:16

thankyou wannabe. I think i should, yes. but not the ones here. they laughed at me when I went last time. I am posh and had savings. they laughed their heads off.

wannabestressfree Mon 17-Oct-11 21:51:39

Phone and speak to tax credits instead then. Your tax credits should be based on last year but you will have to tell them about your changes. Remember you have a month though

popalot Mon 17-Oct-11 21:53:50

You sound like you need to get on top of your situation a bit. Can you not talk to a health professional anonymously if you're worried about ss? It's tough being a lone parent, doing it all alone day in day out. It's not a weakness to have a low point. It's not necessarily something ss would be interested in is it?

And find someone to talk to and shoulder the burden and help you sort some of this out. Citizen's advice bureau would be a great start. When I visited them I had no clue about benefits/tax credits etc etc. They can talk you through it all and give you numbers to call. You can do online calculations for tax credits at HMRC that include your savings anonymously. You can also speak to the jobcentre anonymously too and find out if you would be eligible for income support. Can't remember the number but ask citizen's advice, they gave it to me.

Overall, a GP visit would probably end up being a good idea because you might need counselling or medical help (depends what has triggered your breakdown). But Citizens Advice can find out about this for you. Look up when/where they are in your area on the internets.

Lastly, remember that we are all human, we have all experienced depression of some degree. No-one is going to judge you for this. Don't hide away.

DioneTheDiabolist Mon 17-Oct-11 21:54:44

Go to your benefits office. You should be entitled to financial help and if there is a Sure Start in your area, your child may get a place in their creche for no cost. My DS attended the Sure Start 2yr programme, 5 mornings a week which was of tremendous benefit to us both.

popalot Mon 17-Oct-11 21:58:35

Unfortunately at the job centre they tend to treat people with monies in a different way to poorer clients. Don't know why. Everyone's entitled to help when they need it. if you're not entitled to something they should just explain it.

A lot of this information you can find without visiting the jobcentre.

Start with citizens advice. Get the anonymous number for jobcentre. Have a look at tax credits online. You need to explain to people you are unwell, mental illness is an illness just like a broken bone or a disease is. You are entitled to help.

Perhaps you can look for a charity that deals specifically with depression and ring them. They might be able to talk you through it all step by step, day by day.

happymenow Mon 17-Oct-11 21:59:00

also with tax credits the average hours you work over the year are what they use, so don't panic straight away. hope you find more help, health visitor is for you as well as your child.

parttimedomesticgoddess Mon 17-Oct-11 22:01:19

How old is your DS? If he's older than 3, I thought you got nursery credit for 15 hours a week (which you could choose to use for a registered CM) - unless that's changed?

Gangsta Mon 17-Oct-11 22:19:19

he is three. yes youre right. they are free. but have been using the nursery hours. Howvere have taken him out of nursery as we have a bullying neighbour and I can't take her insults and blanking. Three years of it. I think three years is saintly. two sides to every story though. yes i admit I did turn my car round in her garage three years ago.

Purpleroses Mon 17-Oct-11 23:35:51

If you've been working for past year or two and paying taxes and NI, you should be entitled to JSA (contribution based) even if you have savings, as a fall back if you can't work long term. But as others have said, well worth talking to them (ie benefits office and tax credits) - you may well be able to carry on with tax credits if you're technically working but just off sick. I would go to the GP of health visitor if I were you - They're not going to go snatching kids into care just because their mum is going through a bit of a rough patch - Much more likely to give you some support, pills, counselling, etc - depending what you need/want.

Gangsta Mon 17-Oct-11 23:46:05

thankyou so much for your help and advice. I have had some help on relationships too where I posted this. Purple, I have been cleaning for two years now (done accounts etc) and have paid NI. I wikll find out what it all means. I have been so miserable and worried i haven;'t done anything useful to help myself except hide.

abendbrot Tue 18-Oct-11 00:03:26

Gangsta it sounds as though you are setting yourself up for failure a little bit - you can't take your kid out of nursery because you don't like the looks you are getting from one of the neighbours. There's something unbalanced about this.

Try visualising what the world is like for your son - what future he would like, what he would like to see happen. I'm not dismissing what you are going through, but it may help to focus on him first.

I think that having no other significant adults or family around is extremely dangerous for you in your situation. Get down to social services and you will get help from them. You do need it and you do deserve it. They won't take DS away from you or do anything drastic. They don't do that unless there are clear abuse or neglect issues, and you don't have those. You will be OK. smile

Gangsta Tue 18-Oct-11 00:30:35

extremely dangerous? sad sad I think you are probably right. I cant magic male adult role types or any family here though. That's why i think it'd be best if ds went to live with someone else who has more people and adults etc in their lives than me. its a crap life for him you're right.

Gangsta Tue 18-Oct-11 00:31:53

extremely dangerous? fuck. fuck fuck

DioneTheDiabolist Tue 18-Oct-11 00:42:35

Gangsta, look again at the nursery. What is happening that it is so damaging to your DS to be there?

hippodrama Tue 18-Oct-11 00:44:34

You need support from somewhere. Some time to talk through your situation with a counsellor or similar might help only if to vent some of your frustrations and have some time to focus on yourself.

Job seekers allowance is not means tested - you can get it even when you have savings. There is help out there and I agree that the GP is a good place to start.

Hope things get better for you.

LoopyLoopsPussInBoots Tue 18-Oct-11 00:51:32

I'm not a lone parent and I have no or little experience in this area, but I saw your post and wanted to say hello. You sound a bi poorly to me. When you had the breakdown, what support did you have? Are you still seeing a psychiatric nurse?
I really think a quick trip to the GP would be a good idea.

Hope you're OK, wish I could help in some way. smile

LoopyLoopsPussInBoots Tue 18-Oct-11 00:52:13


threefeethighandrising Tue 18-Oct-11 01:00:10

The job centre are absolutely bloody useless at giving information on what you're entitled to. IME if you already know which benefit you want, then they can tell you how to apply for it. But last time I signed on (2 years ago) I wanted advice about tax credits etc and they were totally unable to give me any advice on what we were entitled to. (When pressed they eventually told me I should sign off - then rang me 5 months later to tell me actually that had been a mistake hmm angry)

Try this Benefits calculator

threefeethighandrising Tue 18-Oct-11 01:01:25

I reckon the best way with the job centre / benefits is to work out what it is you think you're entitled to (we can help you work it out!) and then ask for it.

abendbrot Tue 18-Oct-11 08:06:42

Gangsta sorry I said 'extremely dangerous' it was extremely stupid of me. In proper english I mean that it will be almost impossible for you to formulate a successful family life if you have no role models and no help around you, no family and no friends.

Being part of a group is the thing that keeps us all going - even if it's just having one or two friends/family members to back us up. That's why I recommend SS - for your son and for you. I do wish you well, you are a good person and you can succeed. You have a son and you are doing well with him so far.

SuePurblybiltFromBitsofCorpses Tue 18-Oct-11 08:15:19

Your 15 hours free are transferable, you can use them with a childminder at age 3, presuming they are registered. They do not have to be with the nursery. Sorry if that's been answered and I've missed it.

I think you need to ask for some help to make the horrible phone calls and get things moving. homestart, if you're feeling suicidal samaritans. Go to see your GP, mine helped me with housing and all sorts. Make a start today and get some support.

RedHelenB Wed 19-Oct-11 13:13:14

Do let tax credits know asap though as you don't want to be overpayed on the childcare & working tax front.

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