As the year comes to an end, fear is building up with regards to high cost of living and new things coming to law. Lots of us are so scared of the future but no matter what happens, we are hopeful that somehow we will be fine.
Today is the beginning of the end of the year that started like a marathon. It started with lots of uncertainty with fear as a result of high cost of living. The fear is still there as the cost of living has not come down..
So universal credit been in touch with me about my low wage this month bearing in mind I've told them as I struggle with childcare I take parental leave which is for single parents who do struggle with childcare which is unpaid. They're wanting me to go in for an appointment - I've already told them I have to pick my son up from school due to his anxiety of being bullied. I don't live near his school. I had a massive amount of pressure on my shoulders thinking they were going to not pay me.
Christmas is now a few short weeks away. This used to be a wonderful time for myself and my daughter, but when the pandemic started, followed by the cost of living crisis, it has been harder and harder to engage in Christmas like before. This year will be really tough. As yet I have not been able to do any sort of preparation, no tree, no celebration dinner, no little gifts for my daughter. So this year it seems like it is all but cancelled. Fortunately I am not in any sort of debt, except the odd late bill payment. But I am very careful and only use what I think I can afford. After the Autumn statement I am having to face another year of no increase in the rate of legacy benefits, which I have now come to a point where I feel it is going to push me over the edge financially. I feel I must make some sort of effort for my daughter at this time of of year, so I will try to get her a few small gifts and something a bit more healthy to eat on Christmas day, and as usual make cutbacks to my own life and wellbeing to do so. But this can't carry on due to the impact it is having on my daughter's and my own physical/ mental health. As it is now, she is in bed with a severe case of tonsilitis and at the beging of December has to go for an opperation to have a lump removed from her knee, which is obviously very worrying for both of us. However if only for my daughters sake and the fact that I now know there are people out there that care, who also face their own difficulties in life, I will continue to struggle on and campaign for a better future for all struggling families through the work of this programme.
Trying to work from home, poorly coughing my guts up just want to lay in bed but can’t afford to lose a days pay, banging headache, so cold my nails have even started to go slightly blue but I can’t put the heating on it costs too much just so fed up.
Again I’ve seen the cost of food go up. Luckily I shop at Tesco and Asda and will try get the cheapest option.
It’s crazy! As the prices are not just going up by a few pence. It’s a good 10p to 20p difference. Or, with some foods, it’s lowering the price slightly but you are getting less product therefore actually in the long run again it’s costing you more. It’s to a point where I try put off eating to ensue I have food for my kids. I just don’t ever see it going down.
I’ve had my car repossessed because I couldn’t afford the payments. Luckily we have bikes so I will be able to get the children to school but it’s going to be a very difficult commute over the winter months.
I have been very fortunate to have a car but in reality it was an expensive luxury that I just could not justify.
WOW what a week.
Close to Christmas
My 14 year old girl was freezing yesterday and I asked why she didn’t put the heating on. She said she didn’t want to cost me money. Bless. So sweet but sad that she’s considering the cost of things at her age and things that she shouldn’t really need to worry about. Heating has now become a luxury. Strange times.
So cold right now, so conscious of the cost of gas and electricity, was out all day and evening yesterday so had no heating on in the house, got in straight to bed for us both, my son with two quilts and a snoody, I just had the regular one blanket my feet felt like ice but got to sleep after a hour or so, woke up this morning 11 degrees in the house had to put the heating on at 6am. By 8am the meter was reading over £6! The house was 17 degrees, heating off and sat in a cold house again, pjs dressing gown and blanket, I work from home but can’t afford to have a warm home to work in, will have to put the heating on again in a bit for my son, and it’s only the start of winter, it’s going to get a lot worse than this and no one seems to care or wants to do anything about it.
Had a section 21 so far 2 extensions have been granted the evening before the move date and no one telling me anything, I've paid for things I could moving has become so incredibly expensive being quoted £675-£1500 just for the movers to take my stuff from mine to a storage unit not even 2 miles away storage units costing £235-£312.50 per month with reservation fees and insurance protection and padlocks not being included in those prices all while not knowing if I even need them or not! The council are apparently paying a DHP but the day I was meant to move the mover had not been paid and both of us had been messed about thankfully I have haggled my way into a very kind hearted deal with the moving firms finance directed who has been so helpful and understanding. Without him I don't think I would've had moved at all because even though the council didn't pay him on time to do the move he was willing to move us anyway and he dropped his prices and has wavered fees and even gave me some strength and some faith in humanity back because of how kind he has been to us. I have absolutely no faith that any other company that is as big as theirs would've done this and got messed about as badly as this and still stayed firm on helping us move I thank him so much. The storage unit had also graciously accepted my begging for them to post the move in date on the date of move because I found out the night before and also was kind in wavering the fees and the costs of the extras and even gave me the very best deal he could this is after me haggling my heart out for a few days and still finding it very expensive and unaffordable but the council were saying they will not pay for the storage unit but have done nothing to .help and lied about their intentions for 2 weeks leading up to my end date and not telling us they planned to move us town away from my caring responsibilities and taking my child put of school in emergency accommodation in a hotel in a different unsafe unfamiliar town with no way of affording the travel to take care of my sick mother and taking my child to school I don't drive so it would've meant my child was not learning my mother probably dying from no one taking care of her and the small amount of extra money I get which only just sees me get by removed and being homeless I can't find anywhere for the £947 the gov gives us for rent and can't afford the extra 400+ being asked in my town I'm losing hope my medical is being pushed to the limits from the amount of stress they are forcing me to deal with that they know triggers my conditions and cause me great pain I've had break downs and I'm scared and angry I have nothing to be able to tell my child to comfort her when she asks where we will go and nothing but lies and a false hope of council properties being thrown in my face as the place I live sees homelessness as a category D banding I'm not even getting close to the top of the list and they are telling me to lower my expectations and bid on places I feel are unfit to live in with some properties not even having a photo available to see the front of the property and you have to accept the property even if it's not suitable once seeing or your making yourself intentionally homeless how am I meant to be able to keep affording living out of boxes day to day buying food so I don't have a load of food that will go off due to needing to turn my appliances off the day before the move and then travel to and from another town and extra rent payments because the council don't cover your temporary accommodation fully and even though being no fault of your own you being placed in temporary accommodation means you have to pay to live there and your housing benefit isn't counted towards it and you won't get the extra funds to help. The government needs to help raise the housing allowance to a real life price for the current situation in this country I see single room in shared houses going for £900 and for a single flat £1100 but for 2 bedrooms they are ranging from £1250-£3000 and I heard the other day from my council that the bedroom allowances only go up to 3 bedroom prices of the housing allowance so they expect people needing 4 bedrooms or more have to find them at that very limited amount of money it's not enough it's not fair were all going to end up homeless. Stop lining your pockets Tories and start doing your obligations of keeping the nation out of poverty and actually help instead of trying to make out your helping actually help. I'm so sad about this I have no knowledge of where we are going to live or if me and my 7 year old child are going to live when the landlord finally says 'no sorry you can't have another extension' it's terrifying. Stressful and completely soul destroying that the government allows this and allows councils to get away with doing nothing to help. No contact and the only contact you do get is contradictory of the last person. It's like no one wants to tell me what's going on and just tells me nothing instead while they know all the time what they plan on doing but won't tell you so you can't stop it happening before it's too late.
Dreading winter and Christmas, everything costs more, days out cost more and aren't as good as they used to be, quality and value for money wise. Before lockdown a Christmas market would mean a large hot drink shared, bratwurst each and free entertainment in town. Now the entertainment may be free but the drinks are too expensive even to share and it's one bratwurst tween everyone. But keep smiling, the pressure is on the parent to make a crumb look like gold dust in our children's memories. Give them happy memories, oh we're freezing cold and can't turn heating on. Snuggle as a family under a blanket for warmth and call is cosy, for the kids sake, call it cosy. Can't afford Christmas dinner? Make the most of whatever the food bank gives you and call it a blessing, most families get to choose what they have but others have to be grateful for the cheap bits others don't want. Call it a blessing, be grateful, make it special, don't let the kids see how worried and cold and angry you are.
It won't be that bad for us this year, I'm one of the luckier ones in that I have friends who help out at Christmas but for most in my level of income this isn't most definitely not the most magical time of year.
For a long time now I have been avoiding drinking tea / coffee due to the cost of boiling the kettle, but yesterday my daughter asked if she could make herself a cup of tea. I found myself panicking and making sure she had just enough water to fill a cup and used the water immediately it was boiled to avoid having to re heat it. Is this really how I should be acting when my teenage daughter wants a hot drink ? I don't think so, but this is the way things have to be due to the poorest in society being treated in the way we are and not given the help and support that is desperately needed by the people who are running this country.