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Thread: Refused pip for bipolar and anxiety.

  1. #1

    Refused pip for bipolar and anxiety.

    Hello, this is my first time posting so please bare with me. Also might be a bit long but please please help me.

    I was on dla middle rate care lower rate mobility for 4 years for bipolar disorder. I got called to reapply for pip and did so, filled in the form, provided a list of previous medications (I am currently not on medication as the side effects made me worse) and details of the CPN, psychiatrist and psychologist at I see. I also included a letter that included a report from a psychiatrist from September with my diagnosis and a short summary of my consultation with her on.

    Got called for a face to face. I was so upset and scared I couldn't sleep or eat for a week prior to the interview. My mother who cares for me drove me there as there's no way I could have drove there myself. I have panic attacks driving my son to nursery and have to have my mom in connection with me via the car phone to drive 2 miles up the road. I had to excuse myself to the bathroom before my interview to wipe away tears I was so upset.

    In the interview I told her how I'm unable to have any of my medication as I've previously tried to commit suicide, she said but that was 5 years ago? I told her yes but because my moods can rapidly shift and I can be that low very quickly it's not feasible for me to manage it. I told her I can't tell when I'm going high or low but especially high and need to see my mother every day and my husband then monitors me when he's home and have little insight into my moods. She asked about me going out with friends. I don't have friends. If I meet family I can't do it alone I need support. I can go shopping but only if someone is with me, I massively panic I'll be attacked. I told her how I do drive but as little as possible and only if I can connect with my mom on the car phone before I pull off and she stays on the line with me the entire journey and she must be with me in person if it's a new journey as I panic so much. I couldn't even remember when asked the last time I'd drove my car. I told her how I can't sleep and need my husband to inspect the house then suffer from intrusive thoughts and delusional thoughts and it can take hours to calm me down and how I panic aliens are outside or burglars in my house and how I can't watch the news or read the papers anymore. I told her how I spend irresponsibly particularly when I'm high and how much debt I've accrued in the past due to this. I told her how my husband manages all of my money, I'm never in possession of my own bank card and my wages are transferred directly into his account straight from mine and every household supplier is in his name as I couldn't talk to them to pay bills or sort issues. I told her how I don't ever cook and struggle to eat and my husband cooks and encourages me to eat. I am medically underweight due to this and I've had numerous tests to rule out medical causes and the only things ever found are nutritional deficiencies, I then showed her a prescribed multi vitamin that my GP gave me to try and ensure I get the nutrients my body needs. I also told her how I'd recently started a new medicine and the side effects made me so groggy I tried to cook pasta, a very simple thing, and blew the electrics and burned my arm because I couldn't concentrate and was so foggy. I showed her the burn and told her I was waiting for an appointment to discuss another medicine with my psychiatrist. We discussed me working part time, and how I have to have someone with me at work (I work in a pharmacy) and the pharmacist watches me and steps in the event of anything difficult or confrontational as I have a breakdown and cry as it frightens and upsets me so much and my husband has to drive me there and motivate me to go because if he didn't drive me there and provide a list of reasons I should and reassure me nothing will go wrong I'd never go in. I told her it is only with continuous support I work, and then it's only part time because I simply couldn't handle the pressure of more and I haven't had a job for 6 years because of my mental health. I got the job when high and now struggle to maintain it. I like to think it's helping me though not feel so pathetic and useless. We discussed my son being a nursery and how my mother had to come with us thefirst few times and now still has to provide support via the car phone, she asked if I talk to other mums which I truthfully told her I do not. I told her how I need pushing to shower and dress myself and even then I don't shower more than twice a week and most days even with prompting I don't dress until 4pm. I need my mom to help me with my kids and housework.

    I got 0 points. She said I reported having difficulties but she decided I can do it all alone. This is simply untrue. They stated I drove to the assessment with a satnav but I didn't, my mother took me and we both told her that. I am distraught. I am 25 and I need my mother to hold my hand when I leave the house. I feel pathetic and humiliated even admitting this here. This whole experience has destroyed me. I couldn't even leave the house for therapy this week after I got the letter. I've not been eating or sleeping. I've lost 2lb this week. I'm already underweight. My mother said she wanted to complain and we're waiting for the report to go to the DWP then we can request it.

    I've written a letter using their own descriptor tables but I'm scared it's not good enough. How could they say I don't need help? I have two people caring for me round the clock. I'm totally pathetic and this illness has robbed me of my life. It has destroyed my chance at a normal life. The assessor wrote I didn't lack intellect and answered appropriately. The irony is it killed me to talk to her and my intellect means I know exactly how different I am and how much my life is affected by this horrific disorder.

    My mother is so worried she's asked my CPN to ring her as she thinks I need intervention ASAP and I'm suicidal. I don't move I don't eat and I don't sleep.

    If you've read this far thank you. Please please help me. It's got me questioning everything. I feel like killing myself so I don't have to think or worry about it anymore.

  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2015
    Location
    North Lincs
    Posts
    340
    Sorry to hear you're going through such a stressful time. First of all, I would like to say that you are not pathetic at all, you are ill and that is not your fault. Your illness is as real as someone who has something physical like cancer or heart disease, and you did not ask for it just as someone with physical health problems didn't either. Just because it's a condition which affects your mental health doesn't make it any less serious or less deserving of support. It sounds like it's having an effect on your physical health too, which is something they should also be taking into account, such as your condition causing a lack of appetite which is affecting your physical health.
    The disability benefits system seems to set up people with mental health conditions to fail; it seems to me that if they can't "see" it (ie someone like me with obvious arthritis and reduced mobility), it can't be that bad which is totally wrong. My husband has both physical and mental health problems, had his PIP assessment recently and provided 2 psychologist reports about his severe anxiety. The assessor completely disregarded his mental health and he only got points for his physical problems, which made the difference between the standard rates he got on both and the enhanced rate he should have got on mobility if they'd not lied on his report.
    It sounds like you were able to provide proof that you have contact with mental health professionals for your condition which normally goes in your favour, so I really don't know what this so-called "professional" is playing at. Intellect has nothing to do with it - think of Stephen Fry as an example of a highly intelligent guy who has well-known and serious mental health issues, so they cannot possibly claim that just because you appear intelligent and manage a part time job there's nothing wrong with you!
    The only thing you can do is apply for a mandatory reconsideration and ask the DWP to look at the decision again. If you can get any more evidence, such as something from your CPN to say how badly you are affected and how it's impacting your physical health, that might help. More often than not, the MR doesn't change the decision as it's one DWP decision maker checking whether the first decision maker got it right, so presumably they stick together most of the time, but you have to go through the MR before you can go on to appeal.
    Appealing seems a daunting prospect but it sounds like you have some good family support from your mum and partner, and well over half of cases taken to appeal end up winning so it's well worth it. If you can manage, get some advice from welfare rights or CAB and see if they can help with an MR/appeal.
    I hope you can get through this stressful period and feel better about everything soon. Take care of yourself and good luck.

  3. #3
    stay calm, i've been "awarded" 0 points in the past. stay calm don't worry and go thru the process of the MC, and if need be the tribunal. i've been there too. claim the asssement rate. and the tribunal usually is more just.

  4. #4
    I was awarded zero points for "care" & four points for "mobility".

    The tribunal changed that to nine & ten points respectively !

    Stay calm.

  5. #5
    Hi Mrsl,

    I we've all been in your shoes with the effects of the process. No matter how hard it is keep going and justice will prevail.

    I know every case is not the same, but my grandmother was also refused for PIP being bipolar (also slight mobility but manly bipolar).

    She was awarded standard for both.

    I wish you all the best with this.

    Zed

  6. #6
    Hi
    I'm so sorry to hear what you're experiencing.
    I also have Bipolar and received higher rate care and lower rate mobility on DLA but have just been told I'll only be receiving standard rate daily living care on PIP. My assessor has also made several totally incorrect statements in her decision as well as completing ignoring things I have said and proof that I have provided, so I am in the process of asking for a mandatory reconsideration. I'm not sure how proactive your mental health team is but my team has a member of staff dedicated to assisting people with PIP applications and he also then has further access to the local advocacy team who have people who are very experienced in taking PIP appeals to tribunals and winning them. He has told me that both he and the advocacy team are in the process of dealing with so many cases where PIP payments are either lowered or completely refused so you are not alone, not that that is much comfort I know. He and a member of the advocacy team have just won a case against the DWP wherein someone who was claiming DLA was then told they did not qualify for PIP and after taking the case to a tribunal, the decision was made that PIP was paid and at the highest rate in both daily living and mobility so please do not take the assessor's decision as necessarily final.
    If you haven't already, it would be worth asking your CPN if your mental health team has something similar and if not, can they point you in the direction of an advocacy service who can help you with this. They will do everything for you, as in composing a letter to ask for a mandatory consideration, and if this is not successful then taking the case to a tribunal as well as appearing for you at the tribunal so you did not have to go through that. There are people out there who will help you with this, it's just a matter of accessing them.
    I hope that is of some help and if you ant any further info please let me know. My thoughts are with you and I wish you all the best










    Quote Originally Posted by Mrsl View Post
    Hello, this is my first time posting so please bare with me. Also might be a bit long but please please help me.

    I was on dla middle rate care lower rate mobility for 4 years for bipolar disorder. I got called to reapply for pip and did so, filled in the form, provided a list of previous medications (I am currently not on medication as the side effects made me worse) and details of the CPN, psychiatrist and psychologist at I see. I also included a letter that included a report from a psychiatrist from September with my diagnosis and a short summary of my consultation with her on.

    Got called for a face to face. I was so upset and scared I couldn't sleep or eat for a week prior to the interview. My mother who cares for me drove me there as there's no way I could have drove there myself. I have panic attacks driving my son to nursery and have to have my mom in connection with me via the car phone to drive 2 miles up the road. I had to excuse myself to the bathroom before my interview to wipe away tears I was so upset.

    In the interview I told her how I'm unable to have any of my medication as I've previously tried to commit suicide, she said but that was 5 years ago? I told her yes but because my moods can rapidly shift and I can be that low very quickly it's not feasible for me to manage it. I told her I can't tell when I'm going high or low but especially high and need to see my mother every day and my husband then monitors me when he's home and have little insight into my moods. She asked about me going out with friends. I don't have friends. If I meet family I can't do it alone I need support. I can go shopping but only if someone is with me, I massively panic I'll be attacked. I told her how I do drive but as little as possible and only if I can connect with my mom on the car phone before I pull off and she stays on the line with me the entire journey and she must be with me in person if it's a new journey as I panic so much. I couldn't even remember when asked the last time I'd drove my car. I told her how I can't sleep and need my husband to inspect the house then suffer from intrusive thoughts and delusional thoughts and it can take hours to calm me down and how I panic aliens are outside or burglars in my house and how I can't watch the news or read the papers anymore. I told her how I spend irresponsibly particularly when I'm high and how much debt I've accrued in the past due to this. I told her how my husband manages all of my money, I'm never in possession of my own bank card and my wages are transferred directly into his account straight from mine and every household supplier is in his name as I couldn't talk to them to pay bills or sort issues. I told her how I don't ever cook and struggle to eat and my husband cooks and encourages me to eat. I am medically underweight due to this and I've had numerous tests to rule out medical causes and the only things ever found are nutritional deficiencies, I then showed her a prescribed multi vitamin that my GP gave me to try and ensure I get the nutrients my body needs. I also told her how I'd recently started a new medicine and the side effects made me so groggy I tried to cook pasta, a very simple thing, and blew the electrics and burned my arm because I couldn't concentrate and was so foggy. I showed her the burn and told her I was waiting for an appointment to discuss another medicine with my psychiatrist. We discussed me working part time, and how I have to have someone with me at work (I work in a pharmacy) and the pharmacist watches me and steps in the event of anything difficult or confrontational as I have a breakdown and cry as it frightens and upsets me so much and my husband has to drive me there and motivate me to go because if he didn't drive me there and provide a list of reasons I should and reassure me nothing will go wrong I'd never go in. I told her it is only with continuous support I work, and then it's only part time because I simply couldn't handle the pressure of more and I haven't had a job for 6 years because of my mental health. I got the job when high and now struggle to maintain it. I like to think it's helping me though not feel so pathetic and useless. We discussed my son being a nursery and how my mother had to come with us thefirst few times and now still has to provide support via the car phone, she asked if I talk to other mums which I truthfully told her I do not. I told her how I need pushing to shower and dress myself and even then I don't shower more than twice a week and most days even with prompting I don't dress until 4pm. I need my mom to help me with my kids and housework.

    I got 0 points. She said I reported having difficulties but she decided I can do it all alone. This is simply untrue. They stated I drove to the assessment with a satnav but I didn't, my mother took me and we both told her that. I am distraught. I am 25 and I need my mother to hold my hand when I leave the house. I feel pathetic and humiliated even admitting this here. This whole experience has destroyed me. I couldn't even leave the house for therapy this week after I got the letter. I've not been eating or sleeping. I've lost 2lb this week. I'm already underweight. My mother said she wanted to complain and we're waiting for the report to go to the DWP then we can request it.

    I've written a letter using their own descriptor tables but I'm scared it's not good enough. How could they say I don't need help? I have two people caring for me round the clock. I'm totally pathetic and this illness has robbed me of my life. It has destroyed my chance at a normal life. The assessor wrote I didn't lack intellect and answered appropriately. The irony is it killed me to talk to her and my intellect means I know exactly how different I am and how much my life is affected by this horrific disorder.

    My mother is so worried she's asked my CPN to ring her as she thinks I need intervention ASAP and I'm suicidal. I don't move I don't eat and I don't sleep.

    If you've read this far thank you. Please please help me. It's got me questioning everything. I feel like killing myself so I don't have to think or worry about it anymore.

  7. #7
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2014
    Location
    wales
    Posts
    306
    I have mixed bipolar. I recieved enhanced care and standard mobility pip. But I truly believe I only got this award because my assessment fell on a day when I was very unwell and in the depths of a low phase. I really didn't care about the assessment or the award that day. The assessor intruded on my life and I was in no place to deal with it.
    To others my behaviour that day was atrocious. Other people with bipolar would know what I'm saying.

    But I truly believe if I'd been in a better phase of my illness I wouod have had no award. This had happened several times previously with dla.

    It was just pure 'luck' I was so unwell that day.

    It's an unfair system for people with cyclical conditions like bipolar. If I'd been well that day there's no way that assessor wouod have took my word for how things could get. He terminated the interview. He got a good view of bipolar in action that day. I hope it helped him to understand others with mental health conditions when their trying to explain the days they have live like that too.

    He awarded me 26 points for daily living and 10 points for mobility.

    By the time the award came I was shocked. I couldn't understand why I scored so highly. But I was in a different cycle then. It was like the interview had happened to someone else.

    But if people have a diagnosis of bipolar, or other mental health conditions then thr DWP should have to accept what's known of these illnesses at their worst. Because people on a good day can present very normally. Then it's hard to explain how bad things can get.

  8. #8
    hi it was good to see that the assessor saw you on your, bad day, and let hope the next time he comes across bipolar again, he remember your case regards

  9. #9
    Thank you all for your help. I didn't think it had posted so I didn't think to check for replies.

    I've received my report and wrote a letter. The report just keeps saying I work so I must be fine. Apparently as I use a till I can manage money fine. What a joke. It's so different to managing personal finances that it's laughable.

    I also apparently appeared slim but nourished. Really? I'm 10lbs medically underweight and pale from deficiencies and my bones jut out but she thinks I look fine. No one else does. Not my doctors, family or caters but I guess that doesn't matter.

    It was 'unfortunate' I am currently in a low but not rock bottom phase although this changes daily and gets lower and lower. At my worst I don't communicate at all but she said I was low but still spoke so I'm lying essentially. She has no idea the hell my life is at times.

    Crossing my fingers for this reconsideration but I'm doubtful.

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