I had one of those uplifting email exchanges with authority. To summarise the 97 million message trail.
Why have you ticked the box marked WIDOWED
Because I am and no other box seemed to apply
But you weren’t married so you don’t fulfil that definition
In my books I am
Your form will be invalidated if you use it
We were a couple living together for over 20 years. We had a child who and we were formally registered as joint parents living together.
That’s not recognised by the Government
So which box should I use as the other boxes don’t apply
Clearly you should tick the OTHER box
Well that’s good to know…..
Things do need to change. I remember talking to someone from the village. He had been partners with someone since the 70s. When his partner died a couple of years back he was denied much needed support as he was classed as being single. Single even after living together for over 40 years. 40 years of looking after each other.
In Britain (and many other countries) if you are not married, if a partner dies you are treated differently. Denied financial support. Penalised with additional tax claims. And even more hurtfully – denied the right to call yourself a widow and classed as being single.
That has to change.