Recapping my worst nightmare in a IVA is here

June 23rd, 2011

Hi, Im just catching up back on the forum today after a really difficult few weeks. I have really missed the forum & my husband is encouraging me to get back to some normality as Ive had a really hard time lately.

Going back to my post “my worst nightmare in a IVA is here” really felt awful when it happened.   I have moaned n groaned about my poorly car & its problems, though I never realized its problems would cost over 1500/1600 to fix! Along with new wheels, replacing rusting fuel pipes & exhaust, along with its broken door, broken wing mirror & damaged rear. I think the advise from 2 trusted garages “put your money in another car” was good advise! But its ok if you have large savings or credit to fall on, for someone whom knows nothing of your circumstances to say this to you. Walking away we knew how much we had,  knew it was not enough to repair what we could to put it through its MOT & not worth it in the end, & also not enough to fund a half decent 2nd hand car.

The brilliant thing about being part of the forum is I knew what to do, but I still needed to jump on the forum, as I needed the support from others whom just knew how I would be feeling. I had never wanted to be in the position to ask for a payment break & I was pretty scared to ask. I have to say Grant Thornton were brilliant – totally understood & authorized the payment break straight away. I had already planned how to pay it back, which I wanted to have it repaid prior to our 4th review so everything would still be on track for our final year. We knew it would be a struggle, but we started this IVA on alot less & we were not going to let this beat us. We found a new car after about 4/5 weeks, after trawling the internet & my Dad kindly put some cash into the car fund. He knows nothing of our IVA, but as I do alot for them & only have the one car between us, he wanted to help out so I could get something to help all of us & last a few years. Its been a situation which I never dreamed I would end up in. Without the knowledge & support from the forum, I would of not know what to do. And also without the understanding of a good IP/IVA firm this could of been alot worse.

While all this was going on, my Mum whom has been poorly with MS since I was born, has been getting worse over the past few months. My Dads eyesight has been getting worse since his car accident back in October which has been getting him really down. My Mum is at a point where pain is taking over her life & she no longer functions or wants to function but yet would not see a doctor. It had started to get to a point where my Dad just could not handle it anymore or bare to watch her be in so much pain. I have ended up taking matters into my own hands & contacting the family GP. After having a chat with the GP I got Mum an appointment & got her into see her. Have to say Mum put up a pretty good fight about going but we got her there! The GP was brilliant very sensitive & took her time. But immediately found Mums problems not to be MS related. Mums been a heavy smoker since she was 14, & the GP found Mum may have circulation problems in her legs, which cause pain etc & the cause, heavy long term smoking. The was confirmed by some tests the GP arranged to have done specially at the surgery, as I knew getting her to hospital would be difficult! Unfortunately Mum is so bad, she has to go see a Vascular Surgeon & will require more tests & possible surgery, but she will need to stop smoking. If we do nothing its something that will not go away & will get worse & in the long term could lead to amputation. The GP made a special house visit my Mum n Dad to explain & Mum agreed. Her appointments are next week & are still battling to get her to go! I have had to get Mum to give written consent so I can take over & access her medical information, just so some of the pressure is taken off her & my Dad, but she thinks I am interfering & “out to get her”.

Dad has finally been to get his eyes checked again, he has been 5 times since october & had 5 different prescription lenses. He know has cataracts over his good eye & whats called a floater. His other eye he has been totally blind in since before I was born after falling down a  300ft cliff & landing on his head! He finally has the right glasses now, but his driving days are absolutely over & his favorite past time,  clambering down cliffs & fishing off rocks with a rough sea in front of him are over too, its way to dangerous for him now with his sight. As he is blind in one eye, they will not operate on the cataracts till he has “nothing to lose”, basically meaning when he is nearly blind in the other one. Its been a really hard time for him since the crash & with his sight, his independence & love of fishing was his strengths its been hard to watch him have to adapt.

Ive had a really tough time with my eldest sibling this past month too, she was arrested & charged for drink driving “again”, banned for 4 years & given 1 years probation & 1 years supervision order. I cant really go into more of this & really cant be bothered to waste anymore energy on it either.  I have had to wash my hands of it all again, as I just cant cope with it anymore. Those of you whom know me well, will totally agree with this.

Just to top it all off, Ive got some health problems of my own & I have only just found out this week, I cant really tell you much more just yet but will do in time. Im very scared n it makes me teary just trying to write about it, so when Im a bit stronger & know more I will let you know. Lots of love to all x

A moment of wishing…….

April 7th, 2011

Ive not blogged for a while but I just thought I would blogg about an experience we went through yesterday.

We are currently trying to build up our contingency fund for our car, we know this year it may need a new fuel pipe, wheels, brakes along with the fact the wheel arches are rusting really badly now, we tried to cure & stop them rusting further ourselves but it has not worked.

Our IVA journey has always been difficult & our I&E still lies on being boarder line of being realistic. We still struggle with a 35 a month allowance for the cars service/mot/tax & just recently we have not being managing to save it up,  we are feeling the pressure of Petrol prices & struggling with our Food Budget.  Our clothing allowance is still at 35 a month, with two little boys constantly growing & they go through shoes like no tomorrow, my husband & I often end up going without. We rely on vouchers at christmas & birthdays & wait for the sales.

The day before yesterday (6th) I found out I am losing 62 pounds a month out of my income on Child Tax  Credit, due to the goverement changes being brought in.  One of my forum mentor friends urged me to contact my IP, but I’m having to hang on as I also found out that I may be able to claim around 18 per month in council tax benefit, on the new Means Tested system being brought in. So I feel I have to hang on & wait to see what I can n cant claim. To be honest I normally would not bother claiming Council Tax but with such a big cut in my Income I’m going to have too.

So all this has been a bit of a blow to me & it really got me down, I am so proud of how we have managed to get this far in our IVA, as many of the posters whom have followed us in our journey, know we had set off on a really unrealistic I&E at the beginning. We have been fortunate to keep all of my husbands small pay increases in the past 3 years, but if it had not been for them, we would of definitely failed our IVA by now if not earlier. I do appreciate how we have learned to cope without the back up of credit, and I am so proud of the fact that we are standing on our own feet, instead of being propped up by credit cards. Finishing this IVA is so important to us, to know we have done our best & leave debt behind & look forward to our Future. But the events yesterday really made me feel so frustrated that I had no back up…..

My Washer Blew up & I went to pieces, I know its sounds silly but it just topped everything off!

Many of you know I’m still recovering from a break down & have been a suffer of Anxiety & Depression for some time. Ive had some amazing support from my 2 close friends & the Mental Health Team in my town & very pleased to say I’m doing so much better. Well, one of my friends lives in Buckinghamshire, & when Ive needed her she has always done her best to travel the 400 miles to stay with me. On her last visit, we had arranged to go & stay with her in the Easter Holidays & we have been looking forward to it for ages. Ive not left my town I live in for over 7 years & I’m desperate for a break from it all.

Well with the Washer blowing up & my car needing so much work doing & my budget for it not looking to healthy, just broke me. Buying a new washer would wipe out my budget & we would not be able to go & stay with my friend as we need some spending money to take the boys out etc. I think you can see why I ended up crying.

My Dads brilliant & I know he would always help me out when it comes to money. But I always feel uncomfortable when he bails me out in this IVA, its only happened once & it was when my car failed badly on its MOT. We were only 3 months into our IVA & certainly had not saved enough to cover a 450 bill & he helped us out, & never expected it back. Dad knows nothing of our IVA & I want it to stay that way, as they have never had any form of debt not even a mortgage, he would just not understand & I do not want to disappoint him in that way.

Yesterday was the first time I wished I had the back of a credit card, a moment of dispair & desperation & its times like this when you wonder if its all worth it. I know we can take payment breaks in a IVA & repay them over the following months, but with my income dropping & still struggling to build my funds up for the car, I just felt it would make things worse. So I really felt I had no where to turn, the feeling was horrible.

I told my Dad about the washer & my husband was phoning his Mum, and Dad offered to give me the money to fix it, but with it smoking away in the back yard, we knew its time for a new one. See my Dad had bought us this washer prior to our IVA, so I really could not let him put his hand in his pocket again. My IVA has taught me stand on my own 2 feet & I want it to remain that way, I hope you understand what I mean.

Anyway when we had moved into this house the owners left us a washer so we had 2 washers. My husbands Mum was going through a marriage break down & she left the marital home with nothing. So we gave her this washer we had been given. Then she moved in with her new partner & she left the washer we gave her behind in a rented flat. Which made us really cross as we had said we would have it back & store it in the garage. The she moved again into a flat with a built in washer, so had a spare washer & put it in her shed. FANTASTIC!!! As technically the MIL owed us a Washer!!!! She did moan alittle bit but, my husbands brother is moving into the flat which has the washer that MIL left in, which is in the same block as MIL lives, so if hers goes, she can go & get that one that we gave her! Phewwww!

So no messing, the hubby & I were straight up to the MIL & loaded it into a her partners estate car & we brought it home, the relief was huge! We are both a bit sore today from lugging 2 washers about, but I have a Washer!

An IVA journey  is not easy when these hiccups happen & our IVA journey has been tough & I feel uncertain in how we are going to cope through the next 2 years, I have learned a lot through our journey & still continue to learn….. Thanks for reading my waffle x

The positive side!

January 20th, 2011

I have not updated for ages, Sorry!

I just thought I would update on my thoughts of our IVA life!

After months of worry with my parents car crash & getting them back on their feet, and ending my sisters 3 year battle with an abusive relationship with going through the courts, I was left rather worn out. This was all back in september/october last year.

I hit a brick wall when I ended up posting about how I felt “again” on the social side of the forum, which Im very glad to say made me go see the doctor. The support from the forum is amazing & i am so happy I found this place & such special people that have become real friends. One day I will make it to a Frugal Meeting & meet you all in person, instead of FB!

After 2 months on antidepressants & being totally honest about my feelings with my family & friends, I feel loads better & I have had lots of support. I distance my self from the forum for a while to gather myself up & get back to being me.

We are 33 months into our IVA now & feeling very positive, even though we face hundreds of pounds of repair bills for our car this year, but Im positive we will get through it.

Back in the beginning of the IVA life was hard we were set on a unrealistic budget, which if we had not found the forum, we would of failed our IVA. Luckily our IVA company supported the fact that the budget that had been set for us was to unrealistic & allowed us to swallow small pay increases in expenditure. But if it had not been for the forum we would of struggledd on or gone BR by now.

As I said before this year our car needs so much work doing & my husband desperately needs the car to get to work to help his battle with Anklosing spondylosis & chronic disorder, the work must be done!

We have 2 months free of council tax & made some on ebay so hopefully we can get these repairs done in the next 2 months before the car is due its MOT & service in June!

An IVA life is difficult in the beginning & I think the first year is the worst, but time really does go quicker than what it looks &  feels. Each year you learn of your mistakes & aim to be better prepared for the next. Not having the back up of credit is very daunting & there have been times Ive thought about  “if only I had a credit card” in dire circumstances, but I dont feel the need for one when shopping now. Planning & saving the money I need to fix the car feels alot better than just getting the plastic out! I dont go window shopping anymore, to depressing! I shop when we need things & save myself alittle something each month, if I can, for the “Next Sale” & go n treat myself! We recently bought new duvet & pillows in the sale in Sainsburys & it was such a treat “to us” it felt like christmas!

Im really looking forward & sort of not! to our 3rd review, if all goes well n Im sure it will we will be 2 years nearer to the end!

Ending my history

August 5th, 2010

After my son n I came home – we were thrilled to of come home with him, a day before his brothers 2nd birthday & 3 days before mine. I had spent so much time with him in special care they saw no reason for me to spend a night with them to prove I was capable. Christmas was just around the corner n everything was getting back to normal.

About 3 weeks after having our baby home he started having breathing problems, we took him to the GP.  We were told to keep an eye on him for 24 hours and if no improvement to go straight to A&E. We waited less than 3 hours he got that bad we went straight back to hospital, we were rushed straight into intensive baby care. He had become very poorly with a form of baby bronchitis called bronchlitis. We (myself & baby) were in for another week at one point nearly loosing him all over again.  I refused to leave for a break & as I had done all the tube feeding before in Special Care – they let me continue to do so, I felt I had to do something.  Hubby stayed at home with his brother & I stayed in hospital, I could not leave, if I was going to lose him I wanted to be there. In the last 24hours of our stay in hospital he improved at such a speed – he was then discharged, the relief was tremendous.

He was only born at 31 weeks at 2lb 10 – very good for a baby that early & had left hospital 4lb 6 after being poorly,  our tiny baby & our other son were our only concerns in our lives at this point.  Money, financial worries did not matter but obviously did not get on any better.

Im going to speed up the end of my life story into debt it was already rolling down hill & was never going to stop.

For the first year of my pre mature sons life was spent being poorly – constantly at the doctors  & medication, he did not start eating solids till he was 12 months old because he was so poorly. My husbands aches & pains had started to become alot worse n constant trips to the doctors but nothing came light of anything, he started to give up on going n trying to put up with it. My depression had started again & I had noticed, but was pushing myself to see through it. My own family started to break down with many problems with my older sibling with an abusive relationship that want on to involve police n court cases that are still on going. My Mum had been  ill all my life with MS & had started to go down hill too & trying to support my dad alone was difficult.

I eventually passed my driving test n it urged my hubby to learn n go in for his – though we had no intention of buying a car as felt we could not afford one. I passed a year before my husband & once he had passed there came huge pressure on us from his side of the family to get a car.  We had only wanted to pass our driving tests to give us the freedom to use my Dads car, and with having to be so dependant on others when I was miles away from home in hospital, pointed out the need to be able to drive. Some of our debt that we created funded this as we found it to be  so expensive. With the current debt, we had  weighed up the costs of running a car and said no. But with my hubbys condition getting worse n still no medical reason for it yet, we both felt it could take the physically pressure off him with getting to n from work 4 times a day, as he would either walk or cycle.  We ended up agreeing to get one – with the help of a loan. It was great to start with – we got the loan nearly got all our credit cards paid off with it & bought a second hand car. BUT we  did not cut up the cards we had nearly paid off – yes you can guess the rest. We had already gone beyond our means & it was about to get worse & it did. Within in 3 years of taking the loan we had doubled our debt & had nothing to show for it but a car – no home nothing just a second hand car. Looking back on our debt, nearly 50% of it was on grocery shopping n anything we needed, clothes, petrol etc, i would rather some of it had been a holiday as I had n still have never been on holiday or abroad.

We had got so lost in our personal troubles & more than I can go into from a personal point – we were out of control. I remember the day I wrote down all our debts  & did a Income & expenditure to see if we could live n pay the required payments n not use the cards. The shock was unbelievable when I saw the debt & the little we had left once everything was paid. I finally showed my hubby the true figures of our debt and our income and expenditure, shaking n crying. But as he was having so many of his own problems with his health and not really being able to understand it all, I was on my own & very lost. With no family with financial stability or understanding of debt – I reached out to the most popular source in the world the internet…………………..

Trying to get on top

April 1st, 2010

Once our tax credits got sorted, n we started to get used to our income, we tried to get sorted. But I had gone into a state of depression after my illnesses & shopping had become my fix for my depression. I never bought anything full price I was always addicted to the sales. Our debt never mounted (even at the start) from large purchases, just little ones. Which makes it terrible to look back on as there was nothing to show for the debt, not even a holiday. And to this day I have never gone abroad or traveled any where than a few hundred miles from where I was born.

Due to the job I had (tourism) I dealt with lots of people & worked always with people. Becoming a Mum n having to give up my work due to hours that could not fit round child care, not that we afford them at the time & with only 4 months of work maternity.  I had become very isolated n lost. I was the first out of my friends to have a baby, but luckily someone I worked with, had become a good friend whilst I was pregnant, whom was also a Mum. This friend has turned out to be one of the best friends I have ever had &  also became pregnant a few months before I was due with my first little boy.

It took a year for me to get better from giving birth & how poorly I was, n after my first little boys 1st birthday & christmas, the new year to me was to change – for the better. I made decisions that I wanted to do, one was to lose weight (as Id gone from 9st – 13st) & the other was to learn to drive. It was my plan to get me out of depression n help both my my son & my partner. From this my friend also made the same goals & we worked together n went to fitness classes n both started to take driving lessons.

My Husband was working hard & he had grown from a strength to strength in his career, working from the bottom up. But things started to niggle with his back, which at first we put down to his job. He loved becoming a Dad & adored our son, but he wanted a brother or sister to come along soon. I sort of agreed, but everything I had gone through was holding me back. We knew I would not be thinking in going back to work until our son went to school, so he was thinking of keeping them close together, so I would go back to work sooner. A few months went by & I was pregnant again, scared but happy. My weight was down & I was going to be more careful with what I ate during pregnancy this time! n my driving lessons going well.

My pregnancy this time round did not go well again for reasons best know to human nature. I had a few problems n scares to start with n then they settled down or so we thought. By 25 weeks pregnant, I went into labour, which I did not know was labour at the time (when you go into pre mature labour it is different to a normal labour – I was informed afterwards). It happened during the night n I was rushed to hospital by ambulance. I still didnt know what was happening, until a doctor came n sat down n held my hand n told me. I was 2-3 cm dilated & in the process of labour, by which our baby only had a 50/50  chance of survival. Hubby wasnt with with me as he was at home with our son, but the hospital phoned him n his mum had gone to look after our son whom was still asleep – totally unaware, he was only 17 months at the time. Luckily I was given drugs to stop the labour but not the dilation & the labour stopped. BUT I had to be sent away over 60 miles to a hospital with neonatal facilities as our local one had none, Just incase.

I spent over 6 weeks 60 miles away from home, away from my hubby, away from my little boy, away from my family & friends. Hubby could not drive so could only see them 2 times a week – when my elderly parents brought them over. I went into labour 8 times n they managed to stop each one while I was there, the longer the baby is in you the better. All the labours were on my own, the last one which they managed to stop, they nearly lost me & its never left me, sort of one of those where your life flashes before your eyes n everything is about to go black.

I made it to  just under 31 weeks pregnant & came back home – well to the hospital in my town, as they other hospital felt they could deal with me from this point & I was desperate to come home. I missed my baby, my little boy & my hubby & being home.

First night back home – straight back into labour again, Id had enough, I wanted this baby in to keep it safe but part of me was saying get out too. BUT my local hospital could only take babies from 34 weeks & tried to send me back to the hospital 60 miles away. Luckily they were full but then they were going to send me further away over a 100 miles – I flipped my family went mad, but baby was waiting for nothing & was born at home with Daddy watching too. I finally had a natural birth – but baby had to be taken straight away after a 30 second cuddle. Relief for me then sudden terror if he was going to be ok n then guilt. The whole pregnancy felt like it was punishment for the ones Id lost, but I was thankful for getting this far.

Luckily he was a good size, yes another boy, a baby brother & another son for my proud husband. The local hospital was able to keep him & look after hime in Special Care, down to his size n the amount of drugs they pumped me with ment his lungs had matured a bit faster. He was is Special Care for 7 weeks until he came home just before christmas & his brothers n my birthday.

But all this time away ment hubby had to be off work on unpaid leave to look after the other one, he was off for well over a month, family could not help for very good reasons  – so that lead to more living on credit & the whole getting bigger. But at least our baby was safe n well n Id survived yet again.

Can I just say, there was no medical reason to be found as to why this happened to me, they wish they had an answer but they still do not. The consultant in the hospital away from home, honestly had no idea why this was happening.  And I could never be promised again that this would never happen again. I was also told by one top specialist – the human species are the worst at reproducing. 

Starting Again!

March 29th, 2010

Just read on the forum to update blogs!

Well after reading my first attempts Ive realized I was in a state of depression again (at the time) and after a visit to the doctors today, they seem to think with everything I have going on I need someone or something to express myself! (as well as some medication but thats nothing new to me).

So why not here! I will start with OUR story of our IVA – after having fun for a year I was getting into debt through store cards & credit cards, mainly trying to keep up with everyone around me, fashion, partying, going away for mad weekends – which I have to say I do not regret, as I became lifelong friends with the friends I have now. Through my work I met my husband whom we had both had any eye for each other for over 2 years but both being in difficult relationships n him being shy – we did not speak till both of us was free. Finally we met n talked on a staff night out n never looked back, it was like meeting my sole mate, a  year further down the line we moved into together & were blissfully happy! He had no debt n I owned up about mine & we set about paying it off as we wanted to go & live in Australia for a year. We were nearly clear of my debts & I fell pregnant. It came as a massive shock one we did not expect, but due to him being my sole mate he knew of my past & my problems & did not hesitate in telling me to keep our baby. I had really mixed emotions,  happiness, guilt & sadness (for my lost ones) And it had been my life long dream to go to Australia,Ii had family there I longed to visit. It took me ages to accept it, I dont know why but i found becoming pregnant very hard & thought it would go wrong any given moment, but i was very careful followed advise to a T – but becoming a Mum is life changing!

We didnt have our debts sorted & were in a OK flat but not suitable for a baby n tried our hardest to get the best mortgage but only had 50,000 to work with, back then the house prices went up every month & we were constantly taken out by cash buyers. We then went n applied for council accommodation & was told we were not suitable enough as our home was not BAD  enough, & believe me it was! We had our first son, in which I had a great pregnancy but reasons best know to its self I went through a horrendous long labour, n then a c section then nearly died through internal bleeding that the hospital failed to recognize.

I went through postnatal depression & post traumatic stress disorder after the birth & was very poorly.  We had to find a home with no money as I had lost my job &  income & the debts started to mount back up again, we spent 8 months in the flat trying to find a house to rent at the right price etc. I was battling with a new baby & my illness n old haunts – the debts started to rise. We finally found somewhere that we were happy with & could start a fresh n hopefully start to battle the debts.

BUT that did not happen, bigger home, higher bills & we had to use credit to fund the deposit & buy some furniture as the flat was part furnished. Then tax credits did a spectacular crash on us, they reduced our child tax credits & hubby lost his working tax credits & was ordered to pay them back, as he was never owed them. Which went into thousands, this lead us into a massive break down in the finances & we began a battle with tax credits. We had given the correct information, double checked it with them when they sent info back etc. It took 18 months to get sorted, but working tax credits was over paid n hubby should of never been paid them, as they had someone elses income on our file – which we pointed out several times & assured it was ok & income worked out after tax?!?!? We were finally cleared of not owing them anything as it was their fault & my child tax credits returned to normal after 18 months. We got no apology from them either. By this point we were so in debt its was terrible – we would of not taken on the house etc if it had not been for the income we thought we had coming in. The ball of debt had started to roll & you know how hard it is to stop.

I will continue with our road to our IVA later & start my weekly blogg soon xx

Me Continued the finale chapter

August 4th, 2009

Just trying to catch up n end this chapter that I am trying to get out of my system. Moving back to where all my torment started has caused this to all re appear n feel I have to get out of my system. So I am going to try & finish and end it here.

I did go on to be diagnosed as having a break down by my GP – I was signed off work and had the mental Health team assess & support me as well as antidepressants for some years to come. I did not cope well with my support as everything was to far locked down to get out – to a stranger. I went on to continue my abbusive relationship & lost another baby this time through natural causes – but I blamed myself, punished myself even further & went onto have a second breakdown, but counciling therapy still did not help but I kept on with the antidepressants & anxiety therapy.

If it was not through the friends I gained through my employment & the support I got from them, I would never of got through my next chapter. I gained confidence through my employment & managed to get a promotion – even with everything that was happening to me. I got stronger in myself – still struggled with my losses, but started to see the world just that little bit differently. I started to go out with my new wonderful friends & started to have a life that I should of had years ago. Which made a big impact to my relationship it made the abuse worse – but I started to talk about it & the things that had happened to me to my closest friends that I had gained. After one very bad night with my partner I saw the light – I phoned my friend & my dad and got out. The next day with the help of two friends I moved all my stuff out back home to my parents. The weight of my shoulders was lifted & the emotions all came flooding out for weeks after.  But I flet better, scared but free – relieved, i was now back in control of me.

I went onto move in with my best freind & we spent 18 months together working together n basically had the best time been girly n catching up on years we had both missed due to being in relationships from a young age. As she had been in a relationship from school n we were both in similar but different situations. I went onto to be one of the best in the company I worked for & grew through going back to college. The only thing that still kept haunting me the most was the babies I lost & seeing my nephew grow up. My relationship got stronger with my parents but I was still unwilling to talk to them about things that had happened. I came off antideppresants & my anxiety counciling came to an end. I was still dabbling in drugs but not liked I was in my previous relationship, I was still blocking my issues with myself. My husband now worked with me for two years watching me go through everything n was interested for the whole time before he approached me. I never knew till it came to the end of my previous relationship that everyone knew & was worried. You really believe you can hide it & act normal – but it seeps out of you. The support I got was amazing & just what I needed. And when my husband approached me was the right time. I have to end it there so I can begin to blogg normally n close this book n begin my IVA chapter of m life & hope I have not bored or upset anyone – thanks for reading xxxxxx

Me Continued…

June 11th, 2009

Looking back at myself growing up, I always had a low opinion of myself from being really little. My Sister whom is 10 years older than me was a star A+ student, popular & made my parents very proud. For me I had learning difficulties through glue ear being detected very late in my school years, I am also left handed – which back then was “unusual”! Before my hearing problems had been found I was thought of as a backwards. What might not of helped is when I was learning to write, I wrote all my letters backwards that if you put it to a mirror you could read it perfectly. If it was not for my parents fighting with the school & doctors – I don’t know where I would be today. There was one point when my Dad said “as long as she learns to read & write that’s all that matters. Along with my problems & the bullying it lead to me living a very unhappy school life. I was the girl at school whom sat in the corner & was always last to be picked in sport activities. I loved Fridays & was a nervous wreck every Sunday. I lived for the holidays & stayed at home as much as I could. I spent my Secondary School years pretty much the same – but luckily found my best friend, whom I am now back intouch with now. And I became a part in a  small group of friends. I buried my head down in school work caught up with the years I missed. Spent holidays & nights at home or my best friends house & was the perfect daughter. Leaving school & hitting college was the wrong turn for me. The bullies that had been with me from primary school finally found better things to do. Being niave & unworldly, I fell in with the wrong crowd & my best friend abandoned me – leaving me very lost, but I don’t blame her & never did. I started staying out all night, drinking & not turning up for college – for which I got thrown out.

My parents went beside themselves with worry & I stressed them out completley. Dad was very strict with us growing up – when my sister had boyfriends even at the age of 18, they were made to stand out side the house & wait, they where never allowed in. I was lectured & shouted at – but being 17 & very niave I thought I knew everything. The last words my Dad said to me when I first left home was “you’ll end up pregnant & on your own – don’t coming running back here if you do”. I didnt see or speak to them for months & went to live with my first boyfriend, which is when I got involved with drugs. I had started a NVQ level 2 & completed it, but got thrown off that within 10 months & ended up on Job Seekers Allowance.

My parents being the parents they where & still are – soon tracked me down & wanted me to visit them, I soon started to mend bridges with them though they where extremely hurt by what I had done. By that point I felt I could not go back & was guilt ridden for what I had put them through. This was also when they told me the truth about my mum & her MS, they had kept it from me growing up. I never really had a bridge to mend with my sister as the age gap between us lead us to be very distant & she left home when I was 10. I never told them about the drugs & they never found out. After finding out about my Mums MS I had decided to make the decision to never worry them again. So I lead my life with the boyfriend, drugs & the dole and did my best to appear happy & coping when I was in front of my parents.

Just before my 19th Birthday I found out I was pregnant, my wholeworld crashed around me. My boyfriend was heavily into drugs by then & the relationship had started to get abusive & I was desperatly trying to get a job. I was terrified & had no one to turn too. The relationship with my parents was still rocky & my Dads words were ringing in my head. So my boyfriend went to his Mum & told her whom promptly told him to tell me to get rid of it. I was heart broken, but in no situation to bring a child into the world & he made it very clear he did not want it. Reluctantly I had a termination & I have had to live with that every day of my life since. A few weeks after, I put on brave happy face went to pay a visit to my parents. They sat me down & told me they had some news, my sister was pregnant. I broke down the minute they said it & immediatly became concerned as to why. I fobbed it off n just said I was happy for her & listened to them chatting about it. I went home a complete mess to my drugged up boyfriend whom had no sympathy what so ever. How could I tell them now? All my regrets, feelings of loss & sorrow had to be buried & I had to be normal. I turned back to the drugs & my small habit became alot bigger, trying to forget, trying to forgive myself, trying to stop the depression that took over me for some time to come. I found it hard to be a part of my sisters life during her pregnancy, but it didnt make that much difference to her as we have never been close. My parents where the ones I had to listen too, as the “Daddy” did not want to know & my sister doing so well at school landed herself a excellent job after college & went onto have a brilliant successful career. So my parents in there retirment by this point – where going to look after “baby” so my sister could continue in her employment. I felt very distant from them all, maybe I had to be. I was a mess, but I hid from it with drugs – but still strived to get a job which I did eventually. I did one of those job club things & worked for an employeer for free for 2 months before being offered employment. I did really well joined a nice team of people & progressed to assistant team leader. Getting full time employment actually made me worse off – I lost all my benefits & was expected to look after the boyfriend financially. Well when his drugs started to run short & I had to spend everything I earnt on bills – a friend of his finally came forward & got him a job in Halfords. The abuse eased & I thought things were starting to look up & maybe this would make him change. He got the job which was part time, which was better than nothing. I worked hard in my job doing around 60 hours a week & finally my nephew was born. I went to see him in hospital & got to hold him when he got home. Which broke me again, and my regret & sorrow poured out – had I not done what I did, It could of been me holding my baby too. A few weeks later after a really stressful week at work where I had done 74 hours, I finally had a breakdown.


June 5th, 2009

Goodness it has taken me ages to get this started! and I don’t know where to start, So I am going to start with what I feel made me end up in debt – Bear with me if I waffle a bit!

I grew up in a working class family whom never had any for of debt, credit card or loan – everything was always in cash or cheque. My parents worked hard for the money they earned & back in the 1970s they sold their business due to my Mum having Multiple Schlrosis & managed to buy their home out right – with out a mortgage.

I had a great child hood at home, we never had holidays other than those spent on the beach which was just down the road from our house. I grew up in a “posh” area at the time but we did not lead a luxury lifestyle as those that did around us. Mum managed a little part time job in the post office, which kept her going through her difficulties & she liked to earn her share, or some of it. Dad bought a taxi license plate & was lead to believe it would be a good earner. Which years down the line it was not – far from it, He spent 17 years in the trade & only just scrapped by – without any form of credit.

It was hard growing up in a area where everyone had everything & only started to affect me when I got a bit older in primary school. I was bullied for the jobs my parents had & for the clothes I wore – which seemed just mad to me at the time & still does now. I had other problems growing up, I was a poorly child & was in & out of hospital & off school for various of things & got very behind. And when God was handing out noses – I got dealt a bad hand & was bullied for the way I looked from the age of 4-5 & I still get some nasty comments now.  When I hit Secondary school it got worse not just with the way I looked, but I still got bullied for my clothes or shoes & the jobs my parents had. Living in a Posh area at the time – ment going to the “top” school & with kids that had everything they wanted. If me or my sister ever wanted anything – you had to wait to see if santa brought it at the end of the year. Going to Tescos for your trainers – was not cool, but it was fine for me – but not those around me. I spent my school years very lonely & only found my best friend when I was 14. I was so happy at home & Mum & Dad made everything the best it could possibly be & I wouldnt change anything – apart from the bullying. I did ok at school & started College – which is were everything went wrong. All the pressure of school & the bullying & tormenting took its toll on me & I flipped. I went from being the perfect daughter/student to a nightmare – what I put my parents through they just did not deserve. I ended up not completing college, leaving home to live with my 1st boyfriend, whom I spent nearly 6 years with. I was on the dole as it was called at the time along with my boyfriend, but I soon got fed up of no money & got a job within a year of being unemployed. I did well in my employment & started to sort my self out – but the relationship I was in had become abusive within the first two years. In my year of not working I got involved with drugs – not the hard ones, but my boy friend got addicted. I went to work & he didnt. Within the relationship I lost 2 babies & had a break down – If it wasn’t for my wonderful supportive parents, employers & friends I gained through my job, I would not be here now.

When I finally opened my eyes to the relationship I was in – I got out with the help of my very understanding parents & friends through my job, whom are all still my wonderful friends now. I moved all my stuff out & moved home for a few weeks before moving in with my best friend & collegue from work.  This is when the “party ” started.

The relief to be out of the abusive relationship & free & happy in my job & finding true friends whom accepted me was over welming. Then along comes a credit card!!! And at the time it seemed that being in debt was a part of life & everyone was in debt. Now I had had this credit card for a couple of years & never spent on it – I was afraid of it, Wish I had stayed afraid! But all the years of bullying & abusive & not being “in” with the crowd – my shopping addiction started & my addiction to credit also began. Looking back it was all to easy to get credit – every shop wanted you to have one – even the supermarkets.

I shall continue my story tomorrow – I hope you have not found this to boring! – Lyns