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Hi all, new member needing help. - Carers UK Forum

Hi all, new member needing help.

Tell us a bit about yourself here.
Hi all.

I came here as I was advised to do so by a friend of a friend.

My Wife has Fibromyalgia and M.E and is out of action for much of the time. I have a full time Job and 4 children at home to look after (ages 5, 7, 14, 16). My wife has been pretty much bed ridden for the last 21 days and I have had so much to do that its nearly breaking me.

I am the sole bread winner for my huge family, in a rented house and 4 kids that need me. I do the morning school routine every day and go to work for 8 hours, then come home and wash pots, do laundry, make dinner for everyone and then wash up, do homework with little ones, put them to bed .... crash out.

My wife isn't completely out of action all the time and makes the most of it when she is feeling ok, but anything more than a couple of hours of exertion puts her in bed for a few days.

All of my family live 280 miles away and My wife's family never help us.

What am I to do ? Its starting to do me in.

Thanks folks. :)
Welcome to the forum, I'm not surprised you are shattered, anyone would be with that workload. Can you ask your GP to sign you off for stress? If not, your work have a duty to make reasonable adjustments for you under the Equality Act, as your are "disabled by association". Start by ringing Social Services and ask for an URGENT needs assessment, and a Carers Assessment for you. They have a particular duty to support carers who want to work.
Carers UK has a brilliant helpline, who can talk to you about benefits, and generally what is available.
You need to ask yourself if you like your job and want to keep it, or whether it would be better for you and your family to give up work until the children are older? Would it be better if you worked fewer hours?
The helpline can talk to you in confidence, and give good advice.
I would quit work if I could afford to quit work but sadly I don't think that I we would be able to manage financially if I did. I don't earn a great deal but its enough to pay all the rent, council tax, phone bills / internet etc.

I would like to keep my job (as I work supporting families and carers of people with dementia ironically enough).
In that case, ring the Helpline and find out what support you and your wife can get so that you can keep your job. Is you wife in receipt of DLA/PIP? To make life at home as easy as possible, do you have a washer/dryer or tumble dryer? Dishwasher? Try to think of all the jobs you do at home and then ask yourself
If we did things differently, could we avoid/reduce this job altogether - gardening, for example.
Could the children help a bit more? Loading the dishwasher for example.
How can we make food preparation easier? I have arthritic hands and avoid cutting and chopping whenever possible, so I have a Kenwood Chef and a food processor to help.
Do you shop online as much as possible?
She is not currently receiving any benefits but I think I'm going to have to try and get a PIP application in. I'm not optimistic that she will get it as I am aware of the immense difficulty that people with M.E and Fibro are faced with when trying to get PIP.

Ill try and get through to the help line but ive not managed thus far.
It's difficult to get through to the helpline by phone at times, but you can email them and they will reply. Is there an ME Society who can help you with a PIP application?