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Husband won't accept 'charity'

(179 Posts)
ExD Fri 09-Oct-20 12:39:12

I qualify for attendance allowance having broken my back last year. My husband is waiting for a hip replacement.
My vertebrae has healed but still gives me pain for which I take morphine (waiting for Pain Clinic appointment) but I'm unable to do much physical work.
I need help with a large garden but OH won't hear of my applying for AA and using it to employ a gardener, because there are "too many people sponging off the government" or "we don't accept charity", but he can't/won't help me even with the heavy work because I've always managed.
I could use some sensible suggestions I can put forward to make him see sense and change his mind. (no silly ideas such as 'leave him', 'stop cooking meals' please, I don't want to precipitate conflict).
How do you think I should go about it?
We're in our 80s.

tanith Fri 09-Oct-20 12:46:37

Seriously don’t let him dictate to you just tell him kindly that you are going to apply and that the weight of an untidy garden is praying on your mind. I do understand some men can be difficult but this is to benefit both of you.

Smileless2012 Fri 09-Oct-20 12:47:26

In the likely event I think, that you wont be able to change his mind, if it were me I'd apply for attendance allowance so you can afford to get someone to help you with the garden.

It wont be him "sponging off the government" or "accepting charity", not that you'd be doing either of those things, it would be you.

tanith Fri 09-Oct-20 12:47:50

Praying/preying?? Not sure which 😳

aggie Fri 09-Oct-20 12:48:05

What you need the allowance for is exactly what it was set up for !
Can you suggest that he would pay for your helper ? It might concentrate his mind

aggie Fri 09-Oct-20 12:50:14

Also , you would be providing something towards the helpers income , so keeping him off the dole !

Witzend Fri 09-Oct-20 12:57:45

Do you have to involve him in making the application? If not, why not just do it, and ignore any adverse reaction - probably easier said than done though, I know.

crazyH Fri 09-Oct-20 13:01:58

I am not familiar with the different benefits available, but someone I know, in her 60s, very, very well-off , gets Disability Benefit, because she has Rheumatoid Arthritis (well managed and hardly disabled). I applaud your husband for his 'principles'. I really feel this particular benefit should be means tested, but that's just my opinion.
If you are entitled to AA ( Attendance Allowance?) , why not apply for it? You and your husband are in your 80s and definitely need help with your garden. It's the fraudulent claimants that I have a problem with.
Good luck ... I hope you feel better soon...

Nannytopsy Fri 09-Oct-20 13:02:18

I think the suggestion of asking him to pay or the argument that it would provide employment to someone else are both valid. Good luck.

Alegrias Fri 09-Oct-20 13:10:01

What a shame that your OH sees this as "sponging" or "charity", when of course it's not. It could be that he is an independent person who doesn't want to think that they are dependent on anyone else? I'm guessing that in your 80 years plus, you have both already contributed to society, and now its time to get a little bit back. My advice is to explain that to him, and that you are in a situation where you need help, and that nobody can be completely self-sufficient all the time. He needs to understand how this is causing you stress and worry - easier said than done, I know. Good luck.

lemsip Fri 09-Oct-20 13:15:34

Oh do apply. Someone will home visit and see your difficulties......A person I know and visit, was granted a substantial weekly amount even though he gets two pensions. This money is waiting there to be claimed for people to 'buy' in help for whatever they need. it allows you to keep independant. If this fund isn't applied for it will just sit there!. it is not means tested. It is your right! The person I know now employs a gardener.

Oopsminty Fri 09-Oct-20 13:21:18

Hi ExD

Sounds exactly like my father.

I helped my mother get it sorted. You're not spongeing or taking off taxpayers. It's your right and there to be claimed.

Also the gardener used to come at 8am. Father never appeared before noon so he didn't really notice.

annodomini Fri 09-Oct-20 13:23:28

There is no reason why you can't apply for AA in your own right. I suggest that you seek the help of CAB or AgeUK in completing the application as it is very long and complex and often people who try to do it on their own are rejected. Advisers will know what to say and how to say it. In my CAB days I helped plenty of applicants but I hope I never have to do it for myself! By the way, if your spinal damage makes walking difficult for you, have you applied for a blue badge? Waiting for a hip replacement wouldn't qualify your DH for that - unless you're in Scotland!

3nanny6 Fri 09-Oct-20 13:29:07

I was about to say the same as Lemsip. I would just add have you had help from Adult Social care as they usually have professionals that assess what you can and cannot manage,
it is very obvious that you cannot manage the physical work of gardening and it seems your husband cannot help either.
The people from the social care could probably talk your husband around to the idea to claim the A.A. that will make your life much easier.

cornergran Fri 09-Oct-20 13:29:14

There are so many people with the same attitude ExD. Your situation sounds exhausting and worrying. As has been suggested previously would your husband see the justice in it being ‘your turn’ now? You will both have put so much into society in the past it is surely your turn? AA would of course be yours not his but I do understand your desire not to trigger conflict. I’m sorry, I’ve not been very helpful, I can only hope that some comments here can show you a way through this dilemma. Good luck,

eazybee Fri 09-Oct-20 13:30:04

Do you have children? Could they apply on your behalf? I had to do this for my mother because my father was exactly like your husband; 'we can manage', but he certainly could not, and it was my mother who suffered.
If not, you must apply yourself; you have presumably both made contributions through your taxes, and you are entitled to this. It is probably more that he does not want anyone accessing his financial affairs; this was what my father hated.

Oopsadaisy4 Fri 09-Oct-20 13:30:52

I honestly wouldn’t discuss it with him, advertise locally for a gardener, or get a recommendation and pay for it.
Neither of you are able to do it , so get someone in.

V3ra Fri 09-Oct-20 13:39:51

As you're the one who qualifies, and you're the one who needs the help, then just apply. You don't need his permission.
Does he "allow" you to claim your pension?
All these things are what all our taxes pay for over a lifetime to give support to those who need it when they need it.
None of us wants to be in that position, but as a tax payer I don't begrudge you a penny of it. After all I might need it myself one day. So claim with my blessing x

Witzend Fri 09-Oct-20 13:43:20

Eazybee, just to make clear for the OP, attendance allowance is not means tested so nobody will be looking into their finances. I dare say the mistaken idea that this will happen puts quite a few people off applying.

Madgran77 Fri 09-Oct-20 13:43:57

I would just get on and apply. Tell him it is your choice because you quite simply can't do the garden any more.

If you don't feel able to do that then you could just leave the garden until he complains and then state the fact that it has to be that way because you can no longer manage it. However I think that option will be stressful and upsetting for you so I really would just get on an apply.

Cabbie21 Fri 09-Oct-20 13:50:40

On the application form, do not say you need help with gardening. AA is for people who need help with personal care: washing, dressing, preparing meals and eating etc. The higher amount is for those who need supervision both night and day. I am not saying you dont’t qualify, but saying you need help with housework, shopping or gardening is not the qualification.
Once you get the money, which is not means tested, you can spend it however you like.

Kamiso Fri 09-Oct-20 13:54:10

The clue is in the word INSURANCE. We pay in all of our working lives for this so not very sensible to refuse to get your own money back when it’s needed. The longer he holds out the more work is going to be needed. I hope you’re not doing all the heavy work still?

My Dad was the same though. Very touchy about these things. My granny thought she was being put in the workhouse when she needed to go into a nursing home. Hard to break the cycle of thought.

kittylester Fri 09-Oct-20 14:01:39

Please apply and do please ask AgeUk to help you do the forms. They will send someone round to help and they might be able to persuade your husband.

Then please send him round to tell my silly bil how brilliant it is. He has RA and his wife is warn to a frazzled with the house, the garden, the dog and him be he's coping so that's ok.

It might be CAB in your area but please do ask someone to help fill the form in.

pensionpat Fri 09-Oct-20 14:02:18

I’ve completed many claims to AA. In many cases clients were reluctant to claim for different reasons. There are misconceptions due, in my opinion, to the name of the benefit. Here are some objections I have encountered.

I don’t want people prying into my financial affairs. Wrong. This benefit is not means-texted. There are no questions about income or savings.

It might affect my tax position. Wrong. AA is not taxable. Neither does it affect Council Tax or anyone else’s income.

I don t want/need a carer coming into my home. Wrong. It is your choice. You can use the money to help you in whichever way you choose. Cleaner, gardener, taxis, give it away, keep it in the bank. No one will ever ask you what you spend it on.

I don’t think I would be entitled. Let DWP decide. If you’re not entitled they won’t pay you.

AA is paid to the person with difficulties. No one else is involved. No one in the house will even know you are getting it.

I echo previous advice to ask for help with completing the forms. Left to themselves people focus on the things that upset them most, such as shopping, gardening and putting up net curtains (so many women said this). And then perhaps dont mention all their strategies getting out of a chair, or bathing, or in and out of bed. Because they “manage”.

Go for it. Good luck

3nanny6 Fri 09-Oct-20 14:04:23

Cabbie21 I do not want to disagree with your post too much, just pointing out that AA can be used to hire a cleaning weekly help even someone to collect shopping for you if you cannot do that. I think also it can be used to take a taxi for hospital appointments when the person has mobility problems which the OP has as she has medical problems with her spine.