A father-of-three who lives in a council house says he has ‘no intention’ of finding full-time work as it’s ‘not in his psyche’ but denies he’s abusing the UK’s social housing system.
Matt Allen lives with his wife Adele and their three children, eight-year-old Ulysses, Ostara, four, and baby Kai, in Brighton and works just a few hours a week as a yoga teacher.
In the latest episode of documentary series Stacey Dooley Sleeps Over, on the W channel, the presenter stays with the Allen family at their council property in Brighton for three days in a bid to learn more about their unique lifestyle.
The Allens tell Dooley they let all three children co-sleep with them, decide what they want to eat, have no fixed bed time and aren’t allowed mainstream medicine and haven’t been vaccinated.
Brighton dad-of-three Matt Allen, far right, tells television presenter Stacey Dooley in the latest episode of her documentary series Stacey Sleeps Over that ‘it’s not in his pscyhe’ to get a job. Pictured: Stacey Dooley (middle left) with Matt Allen ( far right), his wife Adele Allen (middle right) and two of their three children Ostara, four, (left) and baby Kai
Part-time yoga teacher Matt says most of the family’s income comes from benefits but he says he doesn’t think the family are abusing the UK’s social housing system
The family live in a council house in Brighton and Matt revealed how the parents don’t believe in work because they feel spending time with their children is more important
Ulysses, eight, can’t yet write his own name, but dad Matt says he’s not worried and his son has plenty of time to pick up literacy skills. Ostara, four, is mostly still in nappies, says mum Adele on her Instagram page.
The father-of-three, who battles an autoimmune disease, feels it’s more important that him and his wife, a full time mother, are at home with their children rather than working – however he doesn’t feel he’s abusing the system because his family has a ‘minimalist impact on society’.
Asking how he affords to provide for his family while working a few hours a week, Stacey, 32, asks: ‘How do you do it all Matt, is it all benefits?’
He responded: ‘Mostly, mostly, but we claim the very bottom line.
Adele and Matt say their three children learn ‘through imitation and natural consequences’
During the hour-long show, Stacey quizzes Matt on whether he’s ‘abusing the system’ by forcing the tax-payer to pay his family’s rent when he could work to earn a living
‘Spend more time with your kids’ Matt says one of his main motivations for not working a 45-50 hour week in a full-time job is because he wants to spend more time with his wife and children (Pictured: Matt’s wife Adele on Brighton Beach with baby Kai, son Ulysses, right, and daughter Ostara, far right)
The parents don’t believe in set meal times or telling the children what they should or shouldn’t eat. Picture, eldest son Ulysses eating a plate of raw mushrooms, Brussels sprouts and crisps
Ulysses, who doesn’t attend mainstream school, decides to eat his meal on the floor of the bedroom he shares with his parents and siblings
Ostara and baby Kai with Matt: The yoga teacher admits that his eldest son, Ulysses, eight, who is home-schooled can’t write his own name but the dad-of-three says he’s not worried, saying his literacy is not urgent right now
On Instagram, mum Adele told her followers that the family don’t enforce tooth brushing but do leave tooth brushes and a non-fluoride paste in the bathroom
When asked whether he felt he was taking advantage of the social system he said: ‘Do we feel as if we’re abusing the system? I really don’t think we are, because we have a minimalist impact on society in many respects.
‘In regards to social systems – schools and the NHS – we save money on that. Adele didn’t have births at hospital so we saved money on that.
‘So in our own unique weird wonderful way we balance the book.’
Stacey quizzed Matt: ‘You think it’s justified they pay the rent?’
He said: ‘I’m not saying it’s justified they pay the rent – it’s just that it is that situation at the moment – it is what it is.’
Stacey then put it to Matt that many parents, who want to spend time at home with their children, have to go to work to provide for them. When asked what he would say to them, Matt said: ‘Spend more time with your kids – it’s simple.’
‘I have no intention of working a 45 or 50 hour week – it’s just not in my psyche.’
Meanwhile, the couple’s four-year-old daughter Ostara opted for a bowl of Monster Munch and broccoli. Dad Matt told Stacey that he wouldn’t insist she ate the meal if she didn’t want to, as he also believes in ‘fasting’
Co-sleeping: Ulysses, Ostara and Kai all share one bedroom with their parents, with the family sleeping on mattresses on the floor
On Instagram, mum Adele said the family don’t enforce teeth brushing, saying: ‘We do put toothbrushes out in the bathroom but not fluoridated toothpaste and we do NOT enforce teeth brushing’ (Pictured Ulysees, left, and Ostara)
Elsewhere in the documentary, it was revealed that the family have no rules when it comes to meal time, with the children choosing to eat whatever they want.
At one one point their son Ulysses chowed down on a meal of raw mushroom, raw Brussels sprouts and crisps.
Matt also confessed that he believes in ‘fasting’ and admitted that if there was a day his children decided they didn’t want to eat anything, he wouldn’t insist they did.
The presenter asked: ‘If there was a day where they just weren’t hungry and they didn’t want to eat at all would you try and encourage them to?
Ostara, four, is still ‘mostly in nappies’ mum Adele reveals on Instagram, saying she doesn’t believe in comparing children to society’s milestones
He quickly responded: ‘No, I’m a big fan of fasting – even the dog does it sometimes.’
It was also revealed that eight-year-old Ulysses wasn’t able to write his own name, with his mother insisting that it’s ‘absolutely fine’ for her son to ‘take his time’ picking up literacy skills.
She said: ‘What’s it stopping him from doing other than meeting test requirements?
‘I don’t know any home educated children who go past the teenage skills and don’t pick up the literacy skills.
‘At the moment he’s eight years old and it’s absolute fine for him to take his time picking up those skills – so it’s not urgent right now.’
Stacey Dooley Sleeps Over airs on Wednesdays at 10pm on W Channel