For the last few months, I have been in a really severe episode of depression due to my bipolar disorder. Things have been starting to improve, and I am trying to get to a fit state for work. I have been applying for very part time jobs, I don't want to be out of work, and I knew they were going to kick me off ESA at the first possible opportunity due to their ridiculous ""medicals"" so I'm pushing myself to get back to work, ready or not.
So since January I have been on ESA. Last month I was called to the dreaded medical assessment.
At this appointment, I tried explaining to the ""nurse"" I saw that while I'm in an episode like this, I am really struggling to take basic care of myself. Getting washed and dressed is regularly a huge problem. I'm not eating properly - my partner has been taking care of that to make sure I get some food. I tried to explain all of this, and more - the fact that at times I can be a danger to myself.
I got a phone call yesterday to tell me that not only had I failed to get the required number of points to remain on ESA, but actually I hadn't been awarded ANY points as in their opinion there is no reason for me to be out of work.
When the guy who rang told me this I actually burst out laughing. Because clearly someone who is in the grips of a severe mental illness actually has nothing wrong with them.
So now I have to claim JSA and jump through all of their hoops, being forced to apply for jobs however inappropriate for me they may be.
So I'm angry and tearful. It's so insulting, and reinforces the part of me that tells me that this illness is me being weak and pathetic and should just pull myself together.
Sorry for the rant. I know this sounds confusing because I am actually looking for work, but I'm doing it in the least pressured way I can to stop me from going backwards. I'm following my Dr's advice by doing things this way - she didn't want me put under the pressures of JSA either. But now I have no choice.