Just before Christmas, I was persuaded by my support worker to apply for a PIP. Having been sent the forms, I proceeded to try to complete them.
I had a bit of difficulty, looked on websites for pointers as to how to fill them in. Now I know I have problems. But generally I seem to be able to run my life if I don't have interference. Where I have biggest problems is forgetfulness, a 'hoarding' and 'untidyness' problem, inadvertantly upsetting others, and problems with missing my footing, knocking into things (and having shop items 'jump' off shelves frequently when I pass!) and falling over once or twice every couple of months. I don't usually hurt myself when I fall over, probably as a result of learning how to fall. I also have problems with cooking (I don't do it, apart from boil an egg or put something in the microwave, usually eating cold food).
So I did not send the forms in at all, thinking I would not be eligible and not wanting to waste my time. However, I have now been sent an appointment with Capita for next week. My support worker is willing to accompany me. But what exactly do I say? It is not that the money would not be useful, it is that I do not want to put myself through all the stress involved with my time and then be refused when that is what I think will happen anyway (from other posts on PIP assessments).
And has anyone else just been invited 'out of the blue' having been sent the forms but not sent them off? And should I take the (unsent) answers/evidence with me to help me or would this not help at all?
I had a home assessment recently, which I thought went ok, but she gave me zero points all the way through. She said I gave eye contact when I had dark sunglasses on and never looked at her once. She said I’m not getting any support when I told her I have a support worker from social services, I see my psychiatrist regularly for support and I am supported by friends and family.
My assessment didn’t come out of the blue, a disability support worker filled it in for me and he also just wrote me a letter for the mandatory reconsideration. It’s important to try to remember to not take the questions literally, which I did at a previous assessment, when I also got zero points. This time I was much better at answering the questions but still got zero points. I would say take your answers with you, I think they’ll help you answer the questions. Definitely have your support worker with you.
I find form filling and this kind of thing highly stressful but the extra money will definitely help me a lot, so I’m continuing to presue it. I think it would be better all round if they gave people the money then assessed then 12 months later to find out how the money has helped. They would see a big difference in me after 12 months of receiving financial support. Once I’m up and running with my business etc then I won’t be so reliant on the money but the truth is, I will always struggle with daily living skills, cooking, cleaning, getting washed and dressed etc, so effectively, I think I ought to have the benefit for life, but if I get it for long enough to start bringing my plans to fruition, I’ll be very grateful.
I don’t know my own strength either and I frequently find bruises on me which I have no idea or can’t remember where they came from but I’m used to that now.
Good luck and for each question, take your time and answer it thinking about what you’re like on your worse days because that’s when we need the help.