Thanks for the link. I haven't called your adviceline, but have had advice from my friends benefits advocate person and have spoken to people on careline. It just seems hopeless. I don't understand why someone can't claim carer's allowance if they're in full-time education. I guess they think it's not possible to do both, but it is. I'm up half of the night. I'm caring from the moment I get up (sometimes even before I get up because I'm constantly "on call") until I go to uni and then as soon as I get home until I go to bed at around 3 or 4am. I also work from home a lot so I can fit my studies in around my caring role. It's possible. Hard but possible. I just wish the government would recognise that people don't fit into their boxes. There's no-one else to take over. My friend's mother has an incurable cancer so her parents are occupied enough with that.
I feel very alone and as if my needs don't matter. I've been a carer since I was 2 years old and my health is suffering significantly, and I struggle to pay my rent never mind paying for food. I won a scholarship for my PhD and that pays my fees and gives me a small amount to live on, but it's not enough to live on and obviously I can't get a job to supplement my scholarship. I don't want to have to give up my PhD - I have fought so so so hard to get this far. I have my own health conditions including Post-traumatic stress disorder, and I just feel invisible.
I hope I'm not saying too much... I'm relieved to find other carers who might understand!