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Sun Mar 7, 2021, 06:11 PM

Need advice, input, listening ear from my DU family

as I've mentioned here in the past, I'm looking to go out on SSDI due to bipolar and other serious issues. After working since 1987, I just cannot handle working anymore. I'm hoping to apply this coming June. The plan is my doctor taking me out of work, I apply for the short term disability insurance I pay for. They will turn me down, as they did my last fmla work absence. I'll probably need a lawyer again to get my money. I will be applying for ssdi asap. It can take years to get.

After 12 weeks, I can try to get employer paid long term disability insurance for 2 years so I have income while fighting to get my ssdi. I'm sure I'll be turned down.

Here is my issue. I'm the adult child of alcoholics. I take on a lot of responsibility to not let people down, to keep the peace, etc. So, I feel guilty going out of work on disability. We're not well staffed at adequate levels. I go back and forth like, my health or "loyalty" to not inconvenience or stress my coworkers. This job makes my illness worse. In fact, it's part of the reason I've gotten so bad. My doctor, psych, says my health is most important, and my partner says worry about myself. It's just so stressful. My income will drop 50%

Tl;dr my guilty self needs to be on disability and I don't want coworkers mad at me, even though I know I need to take care of me.

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Reply Need advice, input, listening ear from my DU family (Original post)
XanaDUer2 Mar 2021 OP
lisa58 Mar 2021 #1
XanaDUer2 Mar 2021 #6
lisa58 Mar 2021 #18
BigmanPigman Mar 2021 #2
XanaDUer2 Mar 2021 #7
elleng Mar 2021 #3
XanaDUer2 Mar 2021 #8
elleng Mar 2021 #16
Cousin Dupree Mar 2021 #4
XanaDUer2 Mar 2021 #9
MLAA Mar 2021 #5
XanaDUer2 Mar 2021 #10
MLAA Mar 2021 #12
UpInArms Mar 2021 #11
XanaDUer2 Mar 2021 #13
ms liberty Mar 2021 #14
Irish_Dem Mar 2021 #15
XanaDUer2 Mar 2021 #17
Irish_Dem Mar 2021 #19
Eyeball_Kid Mar 2021 #20
XanaDUer2 Mar 2021 #21
XanaDUer2 Mar 2021 #22
PoindexterOglethorpe Mar 2021 #23
XanaDUer2 Mar 2021 #24
DarthDem Mar 2021 #25

Response to XanaDUer2 (Original post)

Sun Mar 7, 2021, 06:20 PM

1. A coworker said to me when I asked advice..

‘You do what works for you - no one gives a $h*t about you’. I will add: no matter how much you give a $h*t about them.

Do what you need to do

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Response to lisa58 (Reply #1)

Sun Mar 7, 2021, 06:24 PM

6. good point

nice people, one bully who doesn't like me - wife of a commissioner- need to look out for me

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Response to XanaDUer2 (Reply #6)

Sun Mar 7, 2021, 06:43 PM

18. Yes you do - if you qualify for SSD - take it

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Response to XanaDUer2 (Original post)

Sun Mar 7, 2021, 06:21 PM

2. Which state do you live in?

The different states have different rules for this type of stuff. If you have two doctors saying that you can no longer work due to your health (mental and/or physical) condition than you may be able to get 50% or higher in disability retirement. This could be a permanent situation and may take a lot of work on your part but be persistent.

This is a health issue so who cares what anyone else "thinks". If your coworkers really care about you they would be glad that you are finally getting the help you need. What they think is meaningless.

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Response to BigmanPigman (Reply #2)

Sun Mar 7, 2021, 06:25 PM

7. NC

I have a psychiatrist and psychologist. Thanks for your input! I need to look out for me

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Response to XanaDUer2 (Original post)

Sun Mar 7, 2021, 06:21 PM

3. I am/we are sorry, DO take care of yourself, and remember

alcoholism is an inherited, physiological trait.

https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/114310/under-the-influence-by-dr-james-r-milam-and-katherine-ketcham/

JUST sent this link to a 'friend,' who constantly hammers on himself.

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Response to elleng (Reply #3)

Sun Mar 7, 2021, 06:27 PM

8. I know others would have no compuntion

going out. I've been out of work on fmla twice before. I went back. This would be permanent

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Response to XanaDUer2 (Reply #8)

Sun Mar 7, 2021, 06:40 PM

16. Take care of YOURSELF.

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Response to XanaDUer2 (Original post)

Sun Mar 7, 2021, 06:23 PM

4. If your loyalty is hurting you, then you must let it go. Do what is best for YOU.

Don’t sacrifice your well-being to a business or corporation. Stand firm and quit listening to the guilt monster on your shoulder! He doesn’t have your best interests at heart. Best wishes,and good luck to you!

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Response to Cousin Dupree (Reply #4)

Sun Mar 7, 2021, 06:28 PM

9. thank you! Nt

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Response to XanaDUer2 (Original post)

Sun Mar 7, 2021, 06:24 PM

5. After 30+ years in the workforce I e learned literally nobody is irreplaceable 🙂

Despite thinking I was a few times in my career, I realized if a bus hit me there would be someone new at my desk in a week 😬

Take care of you for yourself and your partner! 💖

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Response to MLAA (Reply #5)

Sun Mar 7, 2021, 06:29 PM

10. thank you

it's not that I'm irreplaceable, its guilt at having so few people for shifts and I cannot be replaced while on fmla. It's nuts

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Response to XanaDUer2 (Reply #10)

Sun Mar 7, 2021, 06:31 PM

12. Oh so sorry, I missed that bit that they can't replace you for a couple of years☹️

Advice is the same however, put your health first💖

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Response to XanaDUer2 (Original post)

Sun Mar 7, 2021, 06:30 PM

11. Early on in my working career

I had a mentor who gave the best advice ...

She told me to never think I was indispensable, there would always be another person to replace me ... and if I doubted it, just to remember that everyone dies sometime ...

Take care of you ... don’t worry about the work ... they will and can find another worker ...

The people in your life who love and care for you will be happier if you are happier

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Response to UpInArms (Reply #11)

Sun Mar 7, 2021, 06:31 PM

13. thanks

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Response to XanaDUer2 (Original post)

Sun Mar 7, 2021, 06:37 PM

14. I relate to your situation so much, I have the same attitude about responsibilities to my job

But essentially you have to take care of yourself- your employer is going to take care of themselves first, and so should you.

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Response to XanaDUer2 (Original post)

Sun Mar 7, 2021, 06:38 PM

15. What is the financial, social, psychological cost of not going off work?

If you go against your doc's advice, and the stress of work causes a complete breakdown, it will come at a high price?

Your doc believes that you should no longer work. It will be a serious detriment to your health and well being. And by implication s/he is telling you that your responsibility must now be to yourself and your partner.

Basing your decision upon the hypothetical anger of your co-workers is self defeating as you point out, probably due to your ACA status.

You are not responsible for their feelings, which are totally misplaced anyway. They should be angry at management for not staff the job site adequately, certainly not at you.

Good luck in whatever you decide to do.

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Response to Irish_Dem (Reply #15)

Sun Mar 7, 2021, 06:41 PM

17. Thanks, Irish

I already had a nervous breakdown per my shrink. I'm often not in a good place. I'm 55 and it's like I'll always be affected by being an aca. BTWI'm in therapy. Thanks for replying

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Response to XanaDUer2 (Reply #17)

Sun Mar 7, 2021, 06:54 PM

19. Your doc made the absolutely right call to sign you off work if you are having a major bipolar break

or is afraid you are heading for another one.

ACA is like any other chronic illness, it has to be managed. That is where your therapy comes in.
Also to learn self care so you do not have another break.

I am wishing you the best, it sounds like you have a good team helping you.

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Response to XanaDUer2 (Original post)

Sun Mar 7, 2021, 06:55 PM

20. We usually grow personally identified with the work we do.

So when it's time to leave, and for me, that was retirement, I had to learn about my own worth, both to myself and to my co-workers. Here are a few perspectives:

When you have a group of co-workers whom you appreciate, it can feel as if you have a second family. While you and your co-workers can feel good around one another and you can support one another, have a beer after work, have gatherings at someone's house, etc., all of that is significant and has worth. But you are not family.

I recall my last days before retirement. I was observing through my final months that, when others retired and left the work force, they had varying degrees of fealty toward their work environment. After they left, they wanted to hang around their old work chums, they wanted to share some workplace gossip, and they would want to know how THEIR projects, now taken over by an active worker, were progressing. What was difficult to understand for them, and to some extent, for me, is that from the day that you walk out the door, your RELEVANCY in your workplace, and with the co-workers with whom you shared so much, BEGINS TO DISSIPATE. The world of the workplace goes on: the meetings, the policy changes, the directives from managers, co-worker birthday celebrations-- all of it slowly becomes less a part of your world as you gravitate toward your new challenges within a new context. Just as you watched others pack their things and say goodbye to their workplace, others will dispassionately watch YOU pack your things and say goodbye. Yes, they'll miss you, but others will take your place, others will fill in the gaps that you left behind. And the workforce will again approach wholeness after you leave the empty spot where you used to be.

When you leave work, and in your case, permanently, you are forced to make a choice. You no longer can personally identify with your work. You can no longer gain self-worth through your job. It's natural to feel empty, jittery, and even depressed. But remember. It's all a natural part of change, because it motivates you to plunge forward into your next chapter. And if you can, even for a moment or two, open your mind and your heart to new possibilities.

I often think of a few lines of lyrics written by David Byrne and Brian Eno that seems to fit:

... all of your tomorrows will be yesterdays;
everything that happens will happen today.

Best of luck and good health.

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Response to Eyeball_Kid (Reply #20)

Sun Mar 7, 2021, 07:02 PM

21. thank you very much!

this gives me stuff to think about. In the end, if I need to go out for health, I have

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Response to Eyeball_Kid (Reply #20)

Sun Mar 7, 2021, 07:05 PM

22. thank you very much!

this gives me stuff to think about. In the end, if I need to go out for health, I have to

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Response to XanaDUer2 (Original post)

Sun Mar 7, 2021, 07:41 PM

23. You need to do what is the best thing for you.

It does seem as if you have your ducks in a row about the doctors.

A while back I worked part time as a paralegal for an attorney who does Social Security Disability appeals. A couple of things to be aware of.

Your age matters. If you are under 50, there is a presumption you can be retrained and get work in a different field. If you are over 50, that assumption isn't there, so there's a greater chance of being approved.

They do NOT automatically deny everyone the first time around. People think that simply because so many of them don't have all of the paperwork and documentation needed. It takes a LOT of documentation. I know because I spent most of my job at one of the nearly Social Security offices photocopying extremely thick files.

Do read everything on the Social Security Administration website very carefully because it spells out very carefully everything you need to do, what documentation and proof you'll need.

If you do get denied, look for attorneys in your area who handle the appeals. You'll chat with them on the phone and they will figure out pretty quickly if an appeal will be successful. When I worked for my attorney, I was more than once in her office while she fielded such calls, and it was quite interesting. The ones she turned down, she always made a firm point of saying that hers was only one opinion, and they should consider talking to other attorneys. I will suggest that if you are turned down by two or three different ones, you may need to figure out what other kind of job you can possibly get.

A SSD appeals attorney gets paid some percentage of your award -- which be retroactive to the time you first applied I believe -- up to some specific dollar amount. You pay nothing out of pocket. And what the attorney gets is relatively finite, and will come out of the lump sum of the retroactive amount.

The worst thing for most people applying for disability is that they are not working and have no income. You are well ahead of things with the company insurance.

I hope you let us know how this turns out.

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Response to PoindexterOglethorpe (Reply #23)

Sun Mar 7, 2021, 07:49 PM

24. thank you for your kind reply

I'm 55. I have a SSDI lawyer who agreed to represent me if and when I'm denied. He has worked with my psychiatrist, as well.
Both agree, with my psychologist, I'm disabled

I promise to let my DU buds know. I often post in the mental health forum

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Response to XanaDUer2 (Original post)

Sun Mar 7, 2021, 09:25 PM

25. Absolutely do what's best for you

And it sounds to me like you understand every ramification and have all your ducks in a row. Don't hesitate to take that step if it's what you need. My very, very best to you.

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