Black and White image of a Shadow of Me

Me from in front of the sun

Off the bat, this is my 200th published post on IJAR. It’s taken me far to long to get this far and I should be hanging my head in shame at my total crap status as a blogger. Really I am not that worried. I have posted more posts elsewhere that if I hadn’t had other blogs would probably have ended up here anyway. You can find my other blogs, they are all well signposted. I just wanted to acknowledge the fact that I had made it to 200.

The reason for this post is kind of a follow on to my last post about being discharged from front line Mental Health services. In my last post I was very gung ho about the fact and I was all up for the fact that in a few short weeks I would be going it alone with only the back up of my GP, who I don’t have total faith in, but have very little chances of moving away from due to GP shortages in this area. Over the past week to ten days thoughts have been crossing my mind that are not exactly casting doubts on my pending discharge, but more along the lines of what happens to the rest of the things I have relied on CMHT to provide.

I have no idea if I should be contacting benefits agencies about the team discharging me. Yes it is a change in my circumstances, but I know I am still ill. I know I am doing better, but I also know that I am in no way ready to go back into a work place. There is no documentation about this. Who decides? Please if you know the best course of action from here, please let me know either in the comments or by sending me an email (you can find the email button over there —>.

My group finishes this next Monday. It’s been 20 weeks and I have found them in turns informative, frustrating and hugely humbling. I have learned so much about an illness I don’t have, but can identify with.  One thing that really did force itself home during these past 20 weeks and the emotional journey that I went on whilst being with that group of people, Labels Don’t Matter at all. All that matters is that you are comfortable in your own skin and to a certain extent, mind. One of the things I know I will most probably never achieve is total peace. I have to much twisted thinking and the voices will always be there and I have to keep developing ways to drown them out and keep my equilibrium about as even as I can. Doing this will lead me to a stronger base where I can move on and actually state with 99% certainty that I am in Recovery and I am going to be well. It’s a road that I have found and I have a pretty good map to guide me, I just don’t have a very good compass to keep me on that path yet… but I am working on it.

Until Next Time…


  1. Paul don’t inform the benefit agencies of your discharge, change of circumstances means things like starting work, being admitted or discharged as an inpatient, change of address, winning the lottery, not discharge from community services.
    Have a word with your care co-ordinator or consultant or whoever you feel most comfortable with and ask them to confirm you can have contact with them when your next review occurs [even if it’s only by phone] and ask if they would write a letter supporting you. That is vitally important and any supporting letter must be sent back with the form. If you are in receipt of ESA that means you would need to contact them as soon as you received the letter from Atos informing you of your WCA. That letter will tell you to telephone them but you don’t have to do that, the form arrives two weeks after the letter regardless, then you have 28 days in which to return it so return it by day 24 to ensure it reaches them on time. Try to make a relationship with your GP because a letter from your GP in addition to the CMHT would help, and get your local CAB to help you fill the form in.

    • Thanks for the information Joanna.

      I have actually sent in my last review forms about 2 and half to three moths ago and haven’t heard anything back from them as of yet. I will try and pin down my Care co-ordinator soon. He was supposed to call last week and I briefly passed him in the corridor at the hospital today and he motioned that he would call this afternoon.. so I shall be eagerly awaiting for my phone to ring.

      Thanks again for taking the time to help me out.

      • You’re welcome.
        Was that for ESA, DLA or PIP and did you include any medical evidence? There have been changes since January.
        The best guides are available on this site: http://www.benefitsandwork.co.uk/
        There’s also regulation 29 and 35 [google the Black Triangle].

        • The form I sent back was for ESA. I am currently in the Support Group and have been since I was changed over from IB over two years ago. My DLA award is through 2014 so I know I am going to have to go through the form filling situation again for the PIP changeover.

          Thank you for the links. A quick Google for the regulations you have mentioned sound like something I should be more aware of. Thanks for highlighting them.

          • The fact that you’re already in the Support Group is a good indicator that it should be ok this time, but if you were summoned for the face to face computer assessment then you would need to get the mental health team onto them with a robust NO.
            Get membership of that site and download/print their guide [it’s substantial] and keep up to date with their guidance, you will definitely need a mental health letter to back it. If you were called for a face to face assessment with a doctor then be prepared and take someone with you.

      • Thanks Paul, we are doing ok. Just been reading the convo between you and Joanna which is interesting. As you know we are in the very early stages of what you have been going through. It’s a stressful time as we are playing the waiting game and as you know we all expect the worst due to what is going on and the stories that we are hearing. We will get through it and it’s nice to know that we are not alone in this.

        PS You’re a great guy, Paul and I love your blog! Proud that you are part of the LOU community. I’ll cut the mush now 🙂