The American Social Security Process is Like Legalized Rape.

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by petemora, Apr 14, 2009.

  1. petemora

    petemora Member

    Some musings...

    First, I started the application process in late 2005 and had a hearing in January 2008. At the hearing, the ALJ verbally attacked my very being, she attacked my character, she belittled me for not doing laundry. She indicated that since I wore earrings to the hearing and had my hair cut twice in one year, I had the ability to work. She indicated that since I was receiving disability insurance, I had no incentive to work. Nothing I have ever experienced in my life has made me feel so violated as the ALJ did at the hearing. (BTW My past includesd a physically and mentally abusive father as well as an abusive first husband at whose hands I experienced numerous episodes of "consensual" rape.)

    Second, I am reading a nonfiction book where one of the characters has Alzheimer's Disease and came across this: "You can see the rest of the world and the life you've had, but you can't get there. You can never go back there again...A good description of a living hell." I thought this was a very good description of ME/CFS/FM.

    Third, my LTD insurance was reinstated! My LTD insurance company cancelled my coverage last October and I hired an attorney to represent me for that, plus a new Social Security application. Anyway, on Saturday I went to the mailbox and, lo and behold, there was a healthy check from the LTD insurance company with backpay going back to October!!!!!! I had no idea that was coming! Anyway, I am waiting to hear from my attorney as to what this means, how much can I rely on it continuing, etc. (Can't wait to see what my attorney does when we get to court on my Social Security!)

    Fourth, because I feel somewhat vindicated, the desire to hurt myself has left, for the time being...

    Janice P.

  2. redryder

    redryder Guest

    I first filed in March 1998 and had my hearing after 4 denials in 2003. The ALJ would not hear anything that was already in my paperwork. I was not allowed to state how Fibro had affected me because I had submitted that in writing. I was denied by the ALJ because I could "drive an SUV" which he felt should allow me to work! The ALJ admitted I had a well documented, long standing history of Fibromyalgia but still felt I was capable of working. At that point, in the midst of a divorce caused in part by my Fibro, I was mentally and physically exhausted and emotionally unprepared to continue the battle. I instructed my attorney not to file an appeal. I tried filing for SS disability again last year and now I'm told I don't have the needed hours of work in the specified amount of time to qualify for SS disability. I have worked from age 13 (babysitting) till March of 1998 when I was 48 years old. Now I live with my dad at age 58 because I can't work and only receive $250 a month in alimony. I never thought I would end up this way, even in my wildest imagination.
  3. petemora

    petemora Member

    I went to the website. Wow! I think that will be so helpful in getting rid of a lot of my emotional baggage. Thanks for a great suggestion...

    Yeah, I was totally unprepared for my LTD insurance to get reinstated. The check came to me out of the blue. My attorney was on vacation. I'm waiting to get a letter of explanation from him - he is AWESOME! I didn't think I'd get anywhere with LTD for several years, if ever...

    My husband and I refinanced our house in December and I withdrew my minute 401K monies to pay off some debt. Basically, we would be able to live as we are for a while, without the LTD payments, that is, if my husband doesn't ever want to retire! He's 60+ and not in the best of shape, physically. But, I am totally lucky - he adores me and takes good care of me, with nary a complaint...

    I just think it's so unfair the way the Social Security Administration and ALJ's treat people such as myself and all the others who come to this website. Honestly, I worked for a prosecuting attorney for 9 years and I never saw hardened criminals treated the way I was treated. I guess I was expecting the process to be fair, that's all. I hate to have our government, to whom I willingly pay taxes, treat people this way. How many people give up before they get the benefits they are entitled to? How many people are forced into bankruptcy, how many lose their houses, how many divorces, etc.?

    Anyway, off my soap box and back to

    Thanks again, Caledonia.

    Janice P.

  4. petemora

    petemora Member

    I am so sorry for your experience with Social Security.

    I started babysitting when I was 10 and got my first "real job" when I was 11 - I made popcorn and sold candy at the local theater. I then started working at a drive-in/restaurant when I was almost 14. Worked there 3 years, graduated from high school, and went on to business school. My work history after graduation totals 30 years!

    I originally got sick with CFS in 1998 but was able to force myself to keep working until 2005. I crashed badly and truly haven't had a day since then when I could work. If I don't get approved for Social Security within the next couple of years, I, too, won't have enough work credits to qualify.

    What a terrible, terrible system!

    (Redryder - Thank goodness you have a loving father!)
  5. TeaBisqit

    TeaBisqit Member

    The entire process of SS and also Medicaid and Foodstamps applications are designed to humiliate and degrade you. They get all up in your business, private stuff that you don't even share with relatives. I hate it, but I need it all. I'll be applying for Medicaid and Foodstamps in a few months. So I'll have to go through all that again.

    I cannot emphasize enough to anyone who is applying for SS that you have to tell them you cannot do anything. And I mean anything. Don't say you can drive, don't say you ever wash a dish, you have to tell them you can't move at all. They want to hear one foot in the grave and that's it. If you dare tell them you are dating someone or anything, they will say you can work. If you tell them you can even be on the net for five minutes, they'll say you can work. I had to tell them I had no hobbies at all. Their shrink didn't seem to believe that, but I just stuck to it. I said I was too sick for a hobby of any kind.

    They do try to trap you with things. I remember that I made the mistake of telling the SS shrink that I had been the one to type the paper stating my symptoms and how sick I was. And he was like, if you can type this, you can't be too sick. And I had to say it took me forever to type one page.

    What you wear does matter. They look you up and down. Do not wear nailpolish. Just simple nailpolish and they will claim you can work if you can do that. It's just crazy.

    It's an evil system and we are in an evil world. I hope the tide turns for us in the coming years.
  6. petemora

    petemora Member

    I wish I could disagree with you - I wish you were totally wrong - but, you're not - you are so right in everything you say.

    I got berated at my hearing for WEARING EARRINGS! Even though I told the ALJ that I put earrrings in and leave them in for weeks/months at a time....

    God bless you, TeaBisqit.

    Janice P.