I thought I was having a bad day when I just read a Facebook post from an acquaintance who announced the loss of his son in an accident this morning. There is nothing like genuine bad news to make you realise that your problems are totally surmountable and irrelevant.
Having said that, I’m going back to me, whilst feeling for a family in grief.
Over the last few weeks 3son has revelled in his work and getting paid for the first time. It was late and he’s still waiting for a payslip. Housing Benefit have been most interested in his apprenticeship and have informed us that he now owes £98 odd a week in rent. The facts suggests the figure should be more like £75 but when have facts got in the way.
Today I got the announcement from Tax Credits about my current entitlement which has now plummeted after having lost 2son and now 3 son. It’s not quite in single digits but it’s close.
I also received Council Tax bill which has swapped from my having overpaid by £300 to being under by £600 as they seem to have wiped my single person discount for the entire year rather than when he started work and by charging the full whack, which I’m not sure is correct.
3son threw a bit of a hissy fit when I said his portion of the rent was £100. I didn’t expect it to be that much. He’s calmed down but it doesn’t exactly incentivise him and I haven’t mentioned council tax as well. I now feel churlish if I ask him for a financial contribution towards food and bills, which was the rent he was looking forward to paying.
I also, quite frankly, feel scared about the reduction in credits/benefits. These are the sums I will have to sustain us on over the next two years while I complete my training as a counsellor and can get a proper job. I’m also thinking of ditching one of my part time jobs now, because I can’t get motivated about it enough to do it properly and I can’t make myself care. I may have to get myself a part time job to make up but I only don’t see how I can fit it in. I haven’t sat down and really looked at how much I will have coming in and what I can cut. I was allowing myself an evening of feeling a bit sorry for myself before facing up to reality.
I knew this would happen but it seems to have happened all at once and housing benefit have got it wrong yet again but we have to pay first and argue later. I feel that I’m getting so close to almost starting a new life with a proper job and independent children and all that jazz but all of a sudden I am wondering how I’m going to make it financially. I don’t want to have to go back to penny pinching and I do know that I’m really lucky not to have been that badly off for the last however many years but I’m tired of fighting my case and arguing for benefits and tax credits that I am entitled to. Bank errors are never in my favour.
It does however all fade away in comparison to losing a child. I feel bad for writing all this but this is what is making me feel bad right now and the whole “my pain is lesser than your pain” argument might be true but it doesn’t actually diminish my pain. But still, my heart goes out to a family who will not sleep for many a night to come.