Sorting out statements and spending money

28 Jun

I’ve hardly slept for three days. The stress of the accusation, along with the horrible muggy weather, has left me unable to switch my mind off and relax. I’ve been sitting on top of my bed in my underwear, waiting for the sun to rise so I can go downstairs and make coffee, then falling asleep for a few hours in the morning. I’ve been trying so hard not to let everything get to me, but there’s always a little part of my brain whirring away, trying to make sense of it all.

I’ve wondered if whoever reported me reads my blog. After all, any number of people from a local forum could have the link now. In the past, I’ve been very outspoken when it comes to prejudice towards the disabled claiming benefits – many arguments have started because I’ve refused to let a judgemental idiot make innocent people feel small – and once, somebody posted that the DWP were watching what I wrote, and to be careful. Another member said that I was living off the state and taking the piss. It’s safe to say that the general tone of the forum was of bigotry and bitchiness (it’s the general tone of the town I live in, really) and so there’s a high chance that somebody from there is the one who reported me.

This is where I come unstuck. I don’t know these people from Adam; okay, I met S on the forum and I do have friends who I met on there, but mostly the members were just faceless strangers who had no connection to me other than geography. They only knew what I chose to tell them. They didn’t know me.

I know I can be forceful when I feel wronged. I’ve freaked out when somebody’s backed me into a corner and made some pretty unhinged posts in the past on there. But… I’m nobody to them. Why would they want to try and ruin my life just for kicks?

My mother and I went into the bank today to sort out the statements the fraud officer needs. I almost freaked out; my mother tried to explain to me what I had to say (I’m awful in these situations) and I couldn’t remember what she told me, and I was already panicking slightly over the weather’s ridiculous control over my naturally frizzy hair, so I almost lost it. I don’t know how she brought me back from it, but somehow I managed to explain – haltingly – that I’d been accused of benefit fraud and needed proof of my innocence. The assistant was amazing; he sorted out all my statements and sent off for the ones from my mother’s account, and also helped me send off for another bank card after my mother took mine for ‘safe keeping’.

Relief. Days of stress fell away, because I now know we’ve done all we can until the fraud officer receives the statements. Even my mother – who’s been freaking out constantly since last week – calmed down and we spent the rest of the afternoon spending too much money and, for once, not arguing. It’s her birthday, and I haven’t been able to get her a present so I offered to pay for something she wanted from town. She faffed and umm’d and ahh’d, and I didn’t end up getting her anything. I feel bad, because I never get her presents on time. Still she seemed pleased with the card I got her.

The relief of finally feeling everything may work out okay pushed me into a spending spree. I hadn’t planned on spending much money today but ended up spending nearly £100 on clothes, make-up and presents for S; he’s thirty in a couple of weeks and I think he deserve spoiling this year after helping me through so much.

Z is going to bleach and dye the orange bits in my hair tomorrow, using Directions in Cerise, and I’m going to henna her hair. I’m glad we’re spending time together again. Afterwards I’m meeting S at the pub and we’re going to get the train to Liverpool on Saturday to visit the Tate. He’s taking me for a meal afterwards.

Maybe things are going to be okay.

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Posted by on June 28, 2012 in Every day life


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31 responses to “Sorting out statements and spending money

  1. judithatwood

    June 28, 2012 at 10:06 pm

    Love on a sunny Maine evening! I am happy for you. Little by little, you seem to be leaving some of the worries behind! Yay, you!!! 8-)

    • halfwaybetweenthegutter

      June 29, 2012 at 2:11 am

      I hope so. I really do :) It’s been a strange day here; warm and muggy, raining then sunny. It’s currently throwing rain down but the temperature just won’t drop. I want a good storm!

      • judithatwood

        June 29, 2012 at 2:34 am

        That is always the best way to cut that heat and humidity! When I lived in Florida, the day would be hot and muggy until around 2:30, and then we’d get a short thunderstorm, and it was beautiful outside. 8-)

  2. stuff I said

    June 28, 2012 at 11:29 pm

    I hope you have a most wonderful weekend! :D

  3. ryoko861

    June 29, 2012 at 1:16 am

    I think just spending time with your mom was a gift in itself! She understands and doesn’t want you to feel you have to spend you money on her.
    have a great time with S! You deserve it after the week you’ve had!

    • halfwaybetweenthegutter

      June 29, 2012 at 2:10 am

      Thanks luv! I used the same excuse with my spending today – “oh well, it’s been a stressful week, and everyone needs a cardigan after a stressful week!”

  4. artyelf

    June 29, 2012 at 2:01 am

    I’m so glad you are feeling relief, and a little hope things may work out.
    Have a good weekend. ❀

  5. Kanerva

    June 29, 2012 at 7:02 am

    You gave your mum a great gift in just spending time with her. Glad to hear things are getting on track for you. A BIG ‘boo hiss’ to the spineless coward that started the whole fraud business. ‘What comes around goes around’. Be strong :)

  6. NZ Cate

    June 29, 2012 at 7:58 am

    I’m wondering why you stay in that forum if it is bitchy? Sounds like an awful place to be. :-( I hope you can work it all out soon. <3

    • halfwaybetweenthegutter

      June 29, 2012 at 11:32 am

      Oh, I don’t post on there anymore. I couldn’t take it. I gave up when somebody called me scum for claiming benefits :(

  7. Barefoot Baroness

    June 29, 2012 at 8:58 am

    Hi sweetheart~ Something just flashed through my mind before I finished reading this post. Well no two things.
    One… I mean no dis-respect to your mom. I know that its taken you years to get where you are in your relationship with her and I’d do anything almost to not give you reasons to think different, But I can hardly stand that you are feeling persecuted for something you have no idea why, or where it came from. And have no culpability in. I have to wonder if who the fraud dept. is investigating is your mom. It seems they want to know how the money is being accounted for. Not whether you have worked or not, which they will have access to this info already unless its working under the table kind of thing.

    And two is that I want to thank you for sharing this with us. That you are taking the risk shows an attempt to dealiing with stress in a healthy way~ Kudos you my friend!

    • halfwaybetweenthegutter

      June 29, 2012 at 11:31 am

      Thanks Toni <3 That really means a lot to me, considering I'm awful at dealing with stress!

      Honestly? I've considered they may be investigating my mother. Seeing whether I actually get the money I'm owed (which I do) or something like that. They do already have access to information about whether I've worked I suppose, but I'm thinking it's, as you say, an under the table sort of thing I'm being accused of.

      • Barefoot Baroness

        June 29, 2012 at 1:32 pm

        I’m so grateful that you were not offended by my suggestion regarding your mom. I should have added I was not allegging that she was being anything less than credible with your monies. That was negligent on my part. In everything I have ever read about you and your mom there has never been one time that this was even suggested.
        It flashed in my mind that this could be what they are looking for, that maybe who ever is doing the accussing is accussing your mom in a passive-aggressive kind of way.

        I am confident for what its worth that you are going to be fine, but it angers me that the govt (yours and mine both) hassle those who need hassled least of all. Its absurd. Do they not put together why you are disabled, and what they could possibly be doing to you by all this cloak and dagger BS on their part?
        How can other humanes be so cruel?

        Sending gentlest of hugs, be a bit kinder and nicer to yourself this weekend. I hope you’ll get to spend some time with S. It is obvious that he is good for you. You can tell him this mom on this side of the pond approves. :-)

        • halfwaybetweenthegutter

          July 2, 2012 at 3:38 am

          Oh, I’m not offended at all :) Trust me, it’s entered my head. My mother… she’s a lovely woman really, and I love her to bits, but I can understand why someone may think she’s getting more money than she’s entitled to. It does look strange that my benefits still get paid into her bank even though I’m no longer classed as a vulnerable adults (not that I know of, anyway)..

          I have no idea how other humans can be so cruel; I wish I did. It all seems so unfair how the disabled are treated; like it’s all just fun and games for those who are struggling, when the reality couldn’t be more different. The cloak and dagger bullshit… yeah. I don’t get why I have to be put through that. Again, it doesn’t seem fair.

          Take good care of yourself <3

  8. whereimstaying

    June 29, 2012 at 2:59 pm

    Sounds like fun times ahead. I don’t want to even think about hair stuffs. Mine needs a cut and new color (already)! Oh well, in time. When I have money! Have an awesome weekend and relax if you can!

    • halfwaybetweenthegutter

      July 2, 2012 at 3:35 am

      Thanks, I did! It was a good weekend.

      I put a little bit of money away each week for my hair, otherwise I’d never be able to afford it. Sometimes I wish I was content with boring hair ;) I’m just not though! Mine has to be done every six weeks, sigh.

      • whereimstaying

        July 2, 2012 at 9:24 pm

        I’ve been known to change mine every month or so, color is my favorite thing. Work doesn’t let me do the awesome colors though. :/ Glad you had a good weekend!

  9. imaginemyworldperfect

    June 29, 2012 at 3:54 pm

    Absolutely LOVE the little internet comic! That is hilarious and I can totally relate. Obviously if someone cares enough to try to ruin your life, it means they aren’t satisfied with their own. I think you’re doing something right if they are that jealous.

    • halfwaybetweenthegutter

      July 2, 2012 at 3:34 am

      Jealousy’s such a weird emotion, it really is. I’m not sure I believe that’s what’s fueled this, but at least I do know one thing; my life – as boring as it seems – is much more interesting than theirs! It has to be, if they have to get their kicks that way.

      Oh, I’ve spent many a night wide awake arguing on the internet!

  10. faithhopechocolate

    June 29, 2012 at 5:29 pm

    It sounds like something positive might have come from this fiasco at least. It might be best to not know who reported you or their reasons, because people like that aren’t worth bothering with. Xxx

    • halfwaybetweenthegutter

      July 2, 2012 at 3:32 am

      I hope so, I really do. You’re probably right; I shouldn’t be giving these idiots any of my headspace, really.

      • faithhopechocolate

        July 3, 2012 at 7:33 pm

        Getting your bank to send you a new card is definitely a positive thing! Oh, and I love the “someone is wrong on the internet” picture too. It’s so true, so many people get het up about things that are posted on-line – it doesn’t mean you should be deliberately nasty to people “because it’s the internet”, it’s more about being more selective about what you read and post. In fact, I remember someone saying that no-one ever wins an internet argument, and it was even mentioned on QI that internet arguments are a complete waste of time!

        • halfwaybetweenthegutter

          July 4, 2012 at 9:42 pm

          Ugh, I hate internet arguments. I try not to get into them now, but I’m one of those people who likes to push if I feel I’m right! I really have to get over that.

  11. My Ox is a Moron

    June 29, 2012 at 11:50 pm

    You should be proud of yourself for handling all this stress so well. A small reward for each success in our life is required for our mental health.

    • halfwaybetweenthegutter

      July 2, 2012 at 3:30 am


      I'm not too sure if I'm handling it well, or just pretending nothing bad is happening. Either way, I'm not as stressed as I could be.

      • My Ox is a Moron

        July 4, 2012 at 6:51 pm

        From what I can tell, you are handling it very well. Don’t worry because you don’t think you are worrying enough, that’s just silly. You are doing great!

  12. Trish

    July 1, 2012 at 8:06 am

    You hang in there and don’t let the system beat you. Take care and be strong!


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