posted on Jul, 23 2010 @ 11:27 PM
I built up my own business, providing mortgage and financial advice many years ago after being disillusioned with eh corporate and slave type system
of paid employment in the UK.
I moved into that after doing mental health work when younger, and going to university for a second time afterwards, and not finding work from it.
I struggled for many years building up a client base, and only got an income when deals went through as such. No sick pay, no paid holidays totally
responsible for covering all of my expenses and other life costs including business ones, paying silly taxes to.
Things at last started to turn rosy, and unlike the rest in financial services I saw the issues that led to the recent collapse well before hand, as I
wrote about on here and elsewhere. I warned my clients and the ones who took my advise were as best as they could be protected from the drop in house
values and high personal debt.
At last around 5 years ago things were very much up on the up, and I started to enjoy and enjoy an increasing and growing income with huge amounts of
referrals feeding through as I had built up an name as being honest, and not hitting clients for one sale and leaving them scratching their heads a
few years later when they needed to refinance.
A couple of life events though happened, the main one being my caregiver when younger developed some Psychiatric issues, they were in real danger of
being taken out of the community, and needed lots of care and support for their safety. I helped out as much as I could which grew and grew until
before I knew it I was spending more time unpaid with my previous mental health experience enabling me to keep them in the community. I obviously
could not spend time I needed on my business.
I approached all the care agencies,Nhs, Gp's etc Psychiatrists, Social Workers demanding support for the person, that I couldn’t do it and warned
them of the effects it was having on my life, income and career etc. I was basically in council speak and politicians silver tongued lies told that it
was as it was, funding was not there and if crisis that’s had happened kept occurring in the persons life, and someone was not there namely me to
deal with it, to enable them to live safely in the community they would removed from the community.
A real crisis on top of a few others occurred which meant over a 6 month period I spent 90 -100 hours a week ensuring that persons safety around 4
years ago. I couldn’t see any of my clients, I was dipping into my savings to meet my commitments, begging for support and help from the state. Just
promises "change will happen soon" (where have we heard that since?)
I never changed, I couldn’t abandon my family member, they protected me and gave me a home when I could easily have ended up in an children’s home
when an infant if it was not for their love. I owed it to them, but so did the state they had worked their entire lives paid their dues and taxes.
I ended up with an unpaid credit card bill, which went to court and I couldt pay it due to the situation, I explained the reason, however a judgement
was issued against me.
I had therefore had to stop immediately all further business activity in the financial services arena, and inform he FSA and put my license on
My business and client base therefore was worthless to me from that point onwards as I couldn’t service it.
10 years of hard work, honesty, struggling, paying my way, my business all lost because the UK government would rather pay £350 a day to keep someone
institutionalised than pay £350 a week in wages to pay for carers/support in the community!
I received then for 3 years £60 a week in carers allowance to do the work of 3 people and using the skills of an Psychiatric Nurse. Lost my car,
home, free time, and nearly sanity myself.
Eventually around the end of last year the person had to go into secure accommodation for their own safety as I had to sleep and couldn’t be awake
24 hours an day.
I approached the job centre an was told I had made myself voluntarily unemployed when I made those choices some years ago!
They "sanctioned" my claim for 6 months refusing to pay me a penny in income support of job seekers allowance. I was homeless broke and almost
broken. I appealed again and again to be told each time no, I am persistent and on my last appeal to claim for the unpaid benefits for the 5 months
previously I was told 2 days before the six months was up the appeal had been "lost" somewhere, and it was now to late to appeal as the six months
I have had an job for the last 3.5 months. I don’t like it is less money than I have earned for 18 years. My skill set etc do not suit me to it and
I am one of the oldest people in the dept except for the operations managers. Teenagers earn the same as me.
I have to travel 4 hours an day on train and buses to get there and back which takes up over 1/4 of my income after tax. I had my 6 months
probationary period extended as I was late just once since starting as a lorry hit a train bridge and the railways stopped any more services until an
engineer inspected it. I was 22 minutes late.
If for example I start at 8.15 am I have to leave before 6am and on that shift finish at 6.45pm and get home after 10pm in the night, if I am lucky
and can run to the train station on time for the train, otherwise I have to wait a further 1 hour for the train.
Mon, Tue, Wed, Thurs week just gone I was on a 10 am till 10.10pm shift. I had to wake by 7 am, to ensure the train that gets close by work at 9.30 am
is caught. The last/next train back to the city where I live is 10:38pm which gets me to my city at 11.40pm.
The last bus has then left the town centre so I have had to walk home after that for a further 45 mins to 1hour. The weather has been awful and I have
been soaked through each night when getting back. By the time I iron some clothes have an shower, prepare packed lunch for next day as cant afford
fast food canteen, I have been sitting down at 1 to 1.15 am.
For it to all start the next morning.
I have two days of a week and sleep for the entire first day almost to catch up.
I cant save money to move closer, and anyhow they credit check you now to get rental properties, and the government ensured that is now impossible for
me. Anyhow I am not even sure of the job as on probation still for another six months.
I cant get HP on a car even though it would give me back 10 hours or more of my life a week, the government made sure of that.
I cant work in the industry where I am being offered 3 times my current salary and being approached and get a car free to, the government made sure of
I could never leave the job even though it is impossible to get there and back by public transport at least twice a month I start at 8am on an Sunday,
there is no trains buses to get me there for then, and I have to spend an entire days wages, work for nothing to get an taxi to a place that will get
to a train that gets me there on time.
I could never leave, as I would then be making myself voluntarily unemployed and would be "sanctioned" and have no benefits food money and be
homeless, and searching with millions of others to for work, with an tarnished CV.
There are jobs out there, but the reality of what they entail may be uncomfortable for some. I have had to swallow a lot of pride, which though is
good and have learnt and grown much.
When I look in the mirror in the morning and night no matter how tired, frustrated I am I know I am doing all I can to be a man and provide for
myself. I am not giving up no matter how hard it is.
I am not relying on anyone else except myself, which that comes not pride, but dignity.....
and maybe a little bit of grace.
Do I feel sorry for myself...
Hell no I am grateful every morning I have the health to work, even though I could easily have jumped on the DLA bandwagon (which some older members
of ats may know from some events I have shared once or twice in my past,lots of my body is titanium!)
I am grateful that even in my predicament I live like a king, I have a free mind, I can read, think etc, and besides the time of enslaved in work I am
I sometimes cannot believe how lucky I am that I live like a king, or prince compared to the 2/3rds of humanity that today live on $1 a day or less,
starve, have no access to medical treatments, suffer pests disease dirty water and war.
It brings tears to my eyes that I am so fortunate compared to most of humanity who suffer in hell on earth every day in what we call the "third"
world, which infact should be called the "two thirds of the world"
I appreciate the education I had, I give thanks and praises that I didn’t end a vegetable like 99% of the people in the ICU unit when I was there,
or the ones who couldn’t speak or communicate again, or walk.
When my body aches because of all the drilling, hacking, replacing, screwing, hammering that had to be done by the surgeons to give me a chance of
life I welcome it and say thanks that I am aware of it, and can look at it that way, can still have my mind, personality and choices, that I can feel
a bit sorry for myself in moments of extreme pain.
I am off today now and will visit that caregiver of mine in hospital and again will be moved that I am soo fortunate that I still have my sanity, mind
and freedom both external and internal, as I see the misery of secure mental health units in the UK.
It is a Pleasure to work hard you see and pay taxes to pay the nurses who care for them.
It is a pleasure to pay taxes for the equipment and doctors who saved mine and others lives daily.
It is a pleasure to work so hard to pay taxes to support those who are genuinely unable to work.
If only I could redirect them to the starving children & those who walk 10 miles a day for clean water.
However paying taxes for Lords, Bankers, Nuclear Bombs, Wars and scroungers and the lazy are all in the same bracket for me.