I wrote a little bit about my odyssey with the Social Security Administration a little while back and it appears that it is time for an update.
Today I received my second rejection letter in the mail.
My initial reaction was a mix of shock and anger. I yelled at my husband when he asked what the letter said (not my finest moment).
I have, within the past few days, been able to come to some kind of peace with the psychological testing that I had done last month. That testing, and subsequent hours of interviews, came to the very sure conclusion that I am severely mentally disabled. I cannot now, nor is it likely that I ever will, hold down any type of gainful employment. My mood swings are too often, and too severe. The depression has too deep of a hold on my mind. The anxiety is near constant. The initial assessment is that I’m merely treading water psychologically. I’m not getting better, but at least I’m not in the hospital (which I do take as a bright spot!).
My attorney sent this (what I thought was a fairly compelling) report along to Social Security on July 1. On July 9, the rejection letter was
crafted generated through the SSA’s “Kiss our Butts” form letter department. My testing results were listed as evidence received.
Now I have 13 months invested in this process and I have nothing to show for it, except an ever increasing pile of paperwork.
My attorney tells me that this is normal. Expected. Typical.
I think that it is ridiculous, slipping right past insulting. In the words of my grandson, it is “Stupidy poopy”. (That child is brilliant!)
I haven’t drawn a paycheck in 18 months. I’ve been working on disability for 13. An appeal to have a hearing in front of a judge is the next step and is expected to take anywhere from another 12-15 months. All for a sum of money that will be well beneath the poverty line even though I have worked for 30 years and always made good money.
I feel defeated and small. I feel humiliated. I feel like crawling under the covers and not emerging for the next few days.
But, I’m also seriously pissed off. I want to punch something. Hard. It’s probably a blessing that my right foot is in a cast right now as it does take away the urge to kick something. I should mention that I am not violent. Rarely (once in the last ten years) does my urge to kick or punch something actually end in me kicking or punching something.
This is resulting in a new goal for me for the future. I don’t know when I will be able to handle it, and I for sure don’t know how, but this system has GOT to change. We need to remove the stigma associated with needing disability. I’ve said it before, but this is not something that I want. This is something that I need. And I’m not the only one. But it is humiliating. And it shouldn’t be. It just shouldn’t.
Why is my doctor’s opinion not good enough? I have two opinions and they both say the same thing (Bipolar, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Panic Disorder, OCD, Agoraphobia etc). But someone’s government job is dependent on telling my doctors that they are wrong. I would love to compare everyone’s credentials. *ha!*
Stay tuned folks! Updates as they arrive!