Laughing boy got a letter, out of the blue, towards the end of the last year. It was very official and obviously some government type letter, but it wasn’t clear who it was from. Anyway, it stated that some woman would be visiting him the following Monday morning at 10am to assess his capacity to manage his own finances once he turned 16. Well. What can I say? “What the shitfucktosswank is going on?” sprung to my mind.
Have countless meetings/reports/assessments over 14 years, with health, education and social care professionals, NOT provided some idea whether he can manage his own finances? Isn’t it fucking obvious that – for the time being – this boy lives in a magical, colourful, imaginative world where you don’t need to be able to count to 10? (Not to mention the fact that most children of his age are AT SCHOOL on Monday mornings at 10am???)
Deep breath. Deep breath. I phoned the woman who wrote the letter. She said she would re-arrange the appointment for the holidays, but she worked on a freelance basis and would be driving (100 miles) from Surrey. “Jeez, lady”, I said, “I can really save you a journey, and the government (quite?) a few hundred pounds by suggesting that you ring his headteacher or GP…or paediatrician or pyschiatrist or psychologist or pretty much anyone who has ever met him?” “Oh no”, said Madam Bureauc, “I need to assess him myself”.
Of course. Or you ain’t got a job I suppose.
So about six weeks later we waited for the arrival of Madam B. She came in, sat at the table and I called LB from upstairs. I half thought he might have dug out his old policeman’s outfit as he seems to find his own ways of dealing with this shite, but he came down in his jeans and t-shirt.
After some brief introductions, Mad B said, “Can I start, LB, by asking you how much you think a single bus fare is into Hometowny from here?”
“£4,000”, said LB without hesitation.
Silence. “Sarasiobhan, would you like to sign here?” she said, pushing the ‘Appointment to act’ form across the table.
Credits: Thanks to superlegoguy101 for the loan of the lego!
Reminiscent of meeting we had for the same purpose, but with much less interaction with ‘the boy’. Official arrives and sits at dining table. ‘the boy’ comes downstairs – official and boy look at each other. ‘the boy’ is spoken to and he grunts some kind of response. Official turns to us and says that ‘the boy’ doesn’t have to stay while we complete the paperwork. ‘the boy’ escapes back to his room.
That was nearly four years ago. In the interim, we set up a bank account for my son and he has learned to manage his money efficiently – and probably knows better than me what most things cost. All our kids are different, but somehow it seems to be asking too much of any youngster to manage their DLA at age 16. How many are really ready?
That is crazy. Such a waste of money really and what are the credentials of these people? I agree about any kids managing the money at 16 😦 Glad your son is managing his efficiently now though 🙂
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