Disability question need your opinions please..

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by joannie1, Jun 24, 2003.

  1. joannie1

    joannie1 New Member

    Hi all, It has been a while since I have been around and i hope all is well with everyone.

    I need your opinion on what to do. I am at the reconsideration phase of my disability. I met with my attorney and he got everything sent in for it. However, last week the Gal that has my claim called to ask me a bunch of questions. it was late in the day and my mind wasn't with it totally. The wonderful fatigue and brain fog thingy going on. Anyways, she threw me into one of the wonderful panic attacks when she began preaching to me how "WE" hire attorneys because "we" don't like to deal with the Gov't and it is then her job to try to weed through the paperwork and Attorneys tend to not do their job because they only get paid if we are approved. So, with her crabbing at me i began crying and forgot most of the info I should of told her. I just told her I was tired of this crap with Disability and everything else. And i was ready to lose my mind over it!!! Just tired I guess.
    So, i am wondering if i should take a few days and write a letter to this woman and explain to her what i deal with and all the time and all my diagnosis' that I have? I don't know if it would hurt my claim or help it. Please let me know what you all think I should do.

    I appreciate your advice and thank you in advance.
  2. elaine_p

    elaine_p New Member

    Joannie - Sorry, I don't know whether you should write a letter. But if you do, I think you should point out that your reaction (brain freeze, inability to control emotions, etc.) was because of how this illness affects us: mental fatigue, neurochemicals, etc.

  3. dd

    dd New Member

    Since you are in the reconsideration phase I assume that you have been denied once already. If that is the case then it is very important for you to try to get this lady to understand the illness, your limitations and how dramatically your life has changed due to your illness. If it were me I would write her a letter and be very detailed about your symptoms...pour your heart into it...I would even go as far as to send her literature so that she can see the disease in writing. As a matter of fact, that is what I did when I applied for SSD. I attached information on panic attack disorder and depression to the back of my questionaire form...I was not dx with CFS or FM yet. I would not apologize for crying but explain to her how these DD's affect your emotions...especially all that you have been thru trying to get SSD and it does affect you physically and emotionally. I really don't think that having her hear you cry on the phone is a bad thing. Perhaps she might have a little sympathy for you and that certainly can't hurt. I think that put a little bit of the human factor into it...not just a case # that she is working on.

    I hope this helps a little for you. I know the whole process can be very stressful.

    Best of luck to you.

  4. zggygirl

    zggygirl New Member

    I agree with Debbie. I am just about to appeal my case. During this time I have read some of what has helped people win their cases. It seems that writing letters, personal stories, any of what Debbie suggested is the way to go.
    I bet it was a good thing too that you got upset, and now you have an "excuse" to get in touch with her again :)
    Good Luck and Take Care,
  5. catgal

    catgal New Member

    Hi Joannie~~Under the circumstances, this Gal handling your claim probably did not get the information she needed to help support your disability reconsideration.

    I would write her a letter as direct & brief as possible stating the facts and disabling affects of your illnesses and remember the "3" major points they look for: (1) Frequency; (2) Severity, and (3) Duration. And I would attach supporting data to go with it.

    And, using the "Cardinal Rules of Business Letters": keep the letter as short and to the point as possible; be cordial, direct, factual, stay focused; don't repeat yourself; use descriptive power words; get your point across without being demanding; be assertive without being aggressive, and ask her if there is any further information that you can provide to make her job a easier.

    Being a therapist, what I heard the Gal saying to you wasn't so much bitching AT YOU, but she was feeling overworked because other people were not providing her with the information she needed--thus she HAD to do it and had to do it without much appreciation.

    And, though it isn't always easy to keep this in mind when we're feeling so miserable and want/need help--everybody has their own story, has their bad days--and this Gal could being going through a divorce, have a child with cancer, or a Mother who just died. Or just imagine what it would be like to work in a disability office and trying to process hundreds of claims, listening to hundreds of sick, cranky people all day, or dealing with attorneys who don't deliver which makes their jobs harder. I know I wouldn't want that kind of job no matter how much they paid me because none of your customers are happy; you're overworked, understaffed, and poorly paid, most of the people you talk to are angry, and it's a thankless job.

    And though I'm sorry you were having a bad day and felt mistreated--it sounds to me that she was feeling the same way.

    I hope you win your disability, and everytime I read that someone has been approved--it gives me hope that maybe I will be approved also when I file. Best Wishes and Blessings to You, Carol....
  6. joannie1

    joannie1 New Member

    I appreciate all your input so much and the letter i think is what I will do.

    catgal, I have to say you are totally right in what you are saying. I didn't so much take offence to what she directed to me. I was more overwhelmed with the fact that I have fought this system for so long that I am drained. she too is as overwhelmed as me to be honest. She said that she was very glad she called due to the fact that they have done so much testing lately for MS also and without her contacting me she would have never known and would have probably denied my claim without new med. evidence kind of thing.

    Thank you all so much.