A disabled woman says she has been made to feel “unbearable” because she is on benefits.
Lynn McDermott, 48, claims she’s even been called a “parasite” by would-be suitors when they find out she’s not working.
The single mum, from Southampton, says she receives the payments legitimately, but that hasn’t stopped men she talks to on sites like Plenty of Fish and eHarmony from taking her out or getting mean.
She said, “A man told me I was a parasite. He said, “You can walk and talk, why can’t you work?”
“I’m not financially able to take people out, but most men are divorced and seem to think I’m after their money.
“I’m not looking for handouts in any way, I’m looking for love and that’s all I want. I just want to be loved and love someone else.”
Lynn, whose children are grown and have left home, was diagnosed with endocarditis and underwent a valve replacement on Boxing Day in 2017.
She was then in a coma for six months, from December 2017 to June 2018, before returning to hospital a month later due to immunological issues.
After recovering from her ordeal, Lynn was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis and found to be immunocompromised – meaning her body was unable to fight off infections and disease.
Due to her health condition, Lynn receives Universal Credit, PIP (Personal Independence Payment) and ESA (Employment and Support Allowance) – totaling approximately £21,000 a year.
She said, ‘My disability is that I have heart failure, but you’d never know it from looking at me.
‘I’ve been declared disabled and unable to work because of my disability – but no one would know this because no leg has been chopped off or anything and I’m just getting on with my life.
“I had a PIP assessment and the paperwork with me detailing the issues I have – heart failure and things aren’t getting better.
‘If [men] ask me what I’ve done in my life, they realized I’ve had a huge career, I’m driven and I think let’s see what I can do.
‘I’d like to ask why people on benefits aren’t suitable for dating sites – these sites ask you how much you earn and what your job is, so I say I get about £21,000 in a year.
‘I get a lot of reactions. I last went to Plenty of Fish six weeks ago and got 354 comments from people – they obviously like the look, but they just don’t appreciate the fact that I’m disabled and on benefits.
“I went out on a date with two of them and the first words are, ‘Are you divorced?’ and: “Do you own a home?”
“A guy I recently dated asked about finances on the second real date. I said, “What’s that got to do with it?” He said he didn’t want anyone to suck all his money away because he was loaded.
“The fences shouldn’t be about anything, it should be about what the person is like on the inside, not disability or that they’re ‘sucking the life out of Britain’.
“I’m an open book and that probably annoys men because I’ll challenge it.
‘I’ve heard a few people say, ‘Yes, everything you say is correct – but it’s still not for me and I can accept that.’
“What I don’t accept is that I’m unmanageable because I’m on benefits and people on benefits are nobody, they’re scum.
“For me, I don’t know where this hatred of benefits comes from.
“Every guy I question says it’s about what I can offer them rather than what they can offer me and they don’t want someone who doesn’t have the ability to take them out.
“I can still go out to eat, drive, anything — financially I’m just limiting my expenses for what I’m going through.”
“All I want is trust, reliability, that they love me as much as I love them — it just shows they’re so uneducated and judgmental.”
‘A strong woman behind a strong man can only be positive. It doesn’t matter if they have pounds in the bank.
“If people want to judge me without knowing me, that’s their failure.”
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