I can only afford to eat one meal a week but I never let my six cats go hungry

A lady says she can only manage one meal a week during the cost of living problem because she spends most of her money on her cats.

Yasemn Kaptan, 46, of Tottenham, north London, has been missing meals for a year in order to feed her six cats.

Yasemn earns £400 per month in disability benefits owing to osteoporosis, which she uses to pay her rent and utilities.

She gets a weekly stipend of £69 for caring for her boyfriend, of which she spends £60 on her cats.

She claims she sips mint tea to curb her appetite and has shed five stone since reducing her food consumption.

Yasemn said that she does not have any money to spare, but she can’t let the cats go. They have grown up with them. She has had them since they were infants.

She spent a lot of money on them, and they are nearing the end of their lives. It’s not fair to let them leave.

Yasemn is adamant about keeping her cats because she doesn’t know how she or her boyfriend, Erdinc Hassain, 46, who suffers from multiple sclerosis, would live without them.

Now she’s down to one meal a week, and her weight has dropped from 14 stone to nine stone.

Yasemn’s one meal consists of grilled veggies such as peppers, onions, and salad. She also has mint tea during breakfast, lunch, and supper.

She said that when she receive her carer’s stipend, she spend it everything on cat litter, cat food, biscuits, and special milk. She can hardly afford to pay her phone bill.

Her partner is concerned about her, but she has become used to it. She ‘ll be OK; things will get better. There’s nothing she can do; she is not getting rid of her cats. She had them for 17 years, and they’re her tiny kids who keep her going.

Yasemn bought her pets while she was working as a personal shopper and could easily care for herself, the cats, and pay her expenses.

Nevertheless, she was forced to resign in 2022 after being diagnosed with osteoporosis, a disease that weakens bones, making them frail and more likely to shatter. As a result, she has less money.

She eats once a week, Yasemn continued. During the week, she just drinks mint tea or liquids. If she consumes anything, it needs to be soft, like yogurt or veggies.

She weeps every other day and is trying to be pleased with herself, but she is depressed and fatigued. For weeks, she didn’t eat at all and relied only on fluids to survive.

Her tale comes as people become more concerned about the rising cost of living, as well as food and energy costs.

According to a Food Standards Agency study released last year, the number of people utilizing a food bank has risen to one in every six (FSA).

More than one-fifth (22%) of those polled in March 2022 said they missed a meal or reduced the amount of their meals as they didn’t have enough money to purchase food.

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