Mum Describes Feeling 'Invisible' After Homelessness Forced Her To Live In A Car
A woman who became homeless after moving to Cornwall has opened up about her "shame" and how the situation left her and partner feeling "invisible".
Gylisa Jayne Evans who hit the headlines earlier this year over her viral blog post that said she proudly quit her job to become a kept woman, has said she's not always been living in the lap of luxury, at one point living out of her car with no job and no money.
After feeling trapped in her hometown of Stratford-Upon-Avon due to being bullied at work and living with her mentally ill father, Gylisa, 27, and her partner Ryan Evans, decided to run away.
The pair didn't tell anyone and set off in their Renault Clio to start a new life in Cornwall.
"People talk about it all the time, don't they? Running away and starting a new life, but no one ever does."
Ryan said to me one day: "Why don't we just go?".
So they did, with just a duvet and some clothes.
Unfortunately, the pair hadn't appreciated how difficult it would be to find a job without a fixed address.
"We found out that not many people want to hire people for work when you don't have an address," she added, so they quickly ran out of money.
The couple started off in the Torpoint area before parking up by Tesco in Plympton, Plymouth.
The couple had to sleep sat upright in the Clio's seats as they didn't recline and revealed they washed just twice in two months in the Plymouth Life Centre.
"We scrubbed and scrubbed until we were red" she said and claimed they would use the Tesco toilets and wet wipes the rest of the time.
They lived in the car for three months in total, surviving on tins of soup and bottles of water.
"We came down with the best intentions and started looking for jobs and homes immediately, but didn't realise how difficult it would be.
"Without the safety net of a home it's almost impossible to get benefits and get yourself out of the situation."
"We realised we were on our own."
She added: "I felt shame that it was our fault we were homeless. It wasn't pleasant.
"We became so ashamed of how we were living and started to think we had made a huge mistake. We hit rock bottom and I found out what it's like to feel invisible."
Gylisa went as far as to say she didn't feel like she was part of society anymore, describing her existence as "degrading".
Passersby were often rude and judgemental, even reporting them to the police, but they also saw the good side of humanity.
Gylisa said: "There was a woman who worked at the Child Support Agency, near where we were parked, who kept saying if we needed anything to let her know.
"One day she gave us a huge parcel of food, filled with all sorts of things. Even chocolate and juice were like luxuries to us by then. It was amazing."
But slowly, things started to improve when Ryan finally managed to get a job as a delivery driver.
When they had scraped together enough money, the couple got the keys to a rental flat in Liskeard.
From there they went from strength to strength, pulling themselves out of the darkness, with Ryan becoming a self-employed builder.
They are now married and parents to daughter Lily, aged four and live in a house in Pensilva, Cornwall.
Gylisa has found fame as mummy blogger Rock and Roll Mother, going viral for her piece saying she was proud to be a kept woman. And no wonder after her homeless stint.
She now has 43,000 followers on Facebook and has since published a book called Ever The Optimist, but most importantly feels "completely settled" after the ordeal.
Featured Image Credit: SWNS