12-04-2017 09:41 AM
Hey everyone! I was hoping to get some advice because I feel pretty stuck and it's making my mental health worse.
So I live with my family. But I'm 19 and I want to move out for a few reasons. Although I'm safe at home, I'm not being hurt in any way or anything, there are some family reasons why I want to leave (which I won't go into just cos they're personal). Plus it takes me a while to get to uni from my parent's home and I want to live closer. Also I'm pretty much ready to tell my family that I'm trans and I don't want to be living at home when I do that - I don't imagine I'd get kicked out or anything, but there's a couple of close family members whose reactions I'm unsure of and I feel like some distance would be better.
I feel that I am capable of living independently - I'm 100% competent with things like laundry, cooking, cleaning, whatever. I organise all of my own health care appointments, medications, and therapy. I know how to budget, save money, and pay bills and even though I have anxiety/depression I am still very competent at negotiating and talking to others, like landlords, housemates, etc for short periods of time.
I would probably move either into a sharehouse or into on-campus housing. On-campus housing is the goal because a) it would save on travel costs, b) they're not going to refuse to rent to me because I'm queer and c) it'd be a good transitional place to stay because it's close to support if I need urgent mental health help and they provide a very structured way of paying rent etc which would be easier than trying to negotiate with individuals.
My major problem is finances. I receive some youth allowance and energy supplement, it's not enough to afford housing AND medication AND food and until I either work full time or turn 22 I'm not eligible to receive a higher rate of youth allowance. If I was renting I would get rent assistance payments but it's still not liveable (waaaaay below the poverty line!). If I could prove that it takes me longer than 90 minutes to get to class by public transport I would get more money but because the travel times fluctuate between 80-100 minutes I doubt I'd be eligible. I've tried calling Centrelink a couple of times but I can't get through.
My parents don't think I should work at the moment, and I doubt I could cope with full time study and part time work anyway (part time study is not an option or I don't get any youth allowance).
Plus I really think that even if I could basically support myself my family would not want me to move out. I feel guilty because they use my youth allowance for electricity bills, groceries etc, and also I'm worried that if I leave such a big change will cause problems with my sister's school work.
I've done so much research, but I'm not eligible for any housing pathways or youth housing in my area.
I cannot live here until I turn 22, I just can't. Help?
12-04-2017 09:56 AM
I don't have much advice for moving out of home as it's something I have yet to do. But you mentioned getting part time work, what about casual? Could you try to find a job working on the weekend or one day a week? I know my brother works one day a week, so it's possible. It's not much, but it's a step.
It's sucks that centrelink isn't taking your calls. Can you try emailing them, is that something that centrelink has?
12-04-2017 11:09 AM
Working one day a week would be awesome @N1ghtW1ng, and I could probably just get a job at McDonald's or something where I could work a couple of four hour shifts. It's just a question of whether my parents will let me do that My mum says that the most I should work is two hours a week.
Unfortuantely they don't have an email service, just gotta keep calling until someone eventually picks up haha!
I feel so hopeless @N1ghtW1ng Maybe I should just give up.
12-04-2017 12:31 PM
Is there a Centrelink centre you could drop into to speak with someone about all this? I've heard it is very difficult to get through on the phones.
Also just in regard to getting a job - do your parents not want you to because they don't think you would be able to cope with it? Is it something that you want to do?
12-04-2017 12:46 PM
Yeah I know @May_. Tbh it makes me really upset how little the government values young people's health and mental health
The best tip I've heard for the phones is to call first thing in the morning so there's less people waiting already haha. But yeah I could probably go in to my local centre and just ask quickly. Thanks
My parents don't want me to get a job because they think that it will make my mental health worse. This is totally fair and probably true, last semester I worked like three hours a week and it was too much. I don't really want to get a job - studying full time is already so physically and emotionally draining, I don't want to end up in hospital again because I can't cope. BUT I kinda realise that if I want to leave home I will probably HAVE to work. I guess I gotta choose between poor mental health because I'm living at home or poor mental health because I'm exhausted from trying to keep a roof over my head...*sigh*
12-04-2017 04:16 PM
That's a tough decision to make - maybe someone at Centrelink would be able to help you with this decision about whether to work or not to?
12-04-2017 06:26 PM
Haha yep @May_ I am a master at Centrelink by now! Usually I just zone out and play with my amethyst stone, it's a good place to nap because however long you doze for you will still wake up to a two hour wait time Everytime I go there I think 'I should bring some baby toys to give to the struggling mothers with screaming infants' but I always forget so maybe tomorrow will be the day I remember!