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Crohn's Disease Forum » Support Forum » Hello, nervous breakdown


10-05-2010, 04:38 PM   #1
ACNewt
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hello, nervous breakdown

Sorry to get so personal on here for a moment but I am really upset. As I said in my introductory post, I have had a flare up since Aug 12 and am still sick and not at work. I had filed a claim for short term disability and had not really worried much about it. I assumed it would be approved as Crohn's is a chronic illness and I have been going to the doctor and been very sick on a daily basis.

Well today I was informed my short term disability is being declined! They're stating that my symptoms do not qualify and that I should have been able to work this entire time (they give an exception for my colonoscopy and the few days after that) I am shocked to the core. I have been in bed almost every day in pain, vomiting, diarrhea. I never imagined this wouldn't be approved. So on top of being sick I am now very very broke and will likely lose my job! Which means I lose my benefits!

Its put a huge financial strain on me and my boyfriend. He doesnt make a lot of money and we have been having to be "creative" in our finances to get by. I was counting on getting this short term to help us catch up. I am absolutely devastated. I don't know if its the stress from this news but the flare up has been really bad today.

I'm going to appeal the decision but... its so hard. I am still so sick and now so emotionally tired and drained and so sad for my amazing boyfriend. I have this horrible guilt for putting us in this situation. I am so sad... I don't know why I am writing about it and I am sorry if I sound pathetic but I feel like my life is falling apart...
10-05-2010, 04:48 PM   #2
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Was it Cigna? We have been battling them for almost 3 years now. Be VERY careful how you word your appeal. Make sure your Dr. is on the same page. It takes a village to fight disability.
10-05-2010, 04:56 PM   #3
rottengut91
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You don't sound pathetic at all. I can feel your sadness and it breaks my heart. I don't know what your options really are, other than to appeal their decision. Maybe you could speak to your current employer about coming back to work when you are feeling better. Explain the situation you will be in if you lose your benefits. Maybe they will be willing to work with you so that doesn't happen.
Don't give up. You are going through a very rough time right now. It's understandable to feel like things are falling apart, but try your best to calm down. The stress has probably exascerbated your pain. Take a hot bath, relax, you will survive this.
`
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10-05-2010, 05:27 PM   #4
2thFairy
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If your insurance company operates anything like Social Security disability, chances are your case is sent to an automatic rejection for the first two appeals. With Social Security disability (in the US) you can guarantee to be declined at least twice before anybody will actually even look at your files. It helps weed out claims, I suppose, but is most unfair and discouraging. Definitely fight it and appeal.
10-05-2010, 11:04 PM   #5
Jennifer
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Not if you come in with a lawyer. They tend to shape up and get their butts in gear when you have legal help backing you. Least that's what it was like for me getting disability with Social Security. 2thFairy is right on how they try to weed people out by automatically rejecting them. That's how people die or get worse and its wrong but don't give up! It's your life and you deserve treatment. When you talk about your symptoms, only mention your worst possible days and never say that sometimes you feel even remotely ok. If you can't afford legal help, they may be able to appoint someone to you otherwise you may have to appeal after appeal on your own for who knows how long. Chin up! You're going to be ok.
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Diagnosis: Crohn's in 1991 at age 9
Surgeries: 1 Small Bowel Resection in 1999; Central IV in 1991-92
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Things I take: Tenormin 25mg (PVCs and Tachycardia), Junel, Tylenol 3, Omeprazole 20mg 2/day, Klonopin 1mg 2/day (anxiety), Restoril 15mg (insomnia), Claritin 20mg
Currently in: REMISSION Thought it was a flare but it's just scar tissue from my resection. Dealing with a stricture. Remission from my resection, 17 years and counting.
10-06-2010, 04:38 AM   #6
ACNewt
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I'm glad I posted this, what stellar advice. It was such a horrible day. My flare is really bad, a lot of burning diarrhea the kind I haven't had in weeks, really bad aches, and a fever. Stress definitely triggers this disease. I spent a lot of time sleeping and crying. And hurting.

But I am going to appeal because I deserve these benefits and have a legitimate claim for them. I have been in hell for 2 months. You all know my pain. Its frustrating that we have to appeal and do all the work. Its very hard for me to get anything accomplished in my position. Hell, even faxing the paperwork to them last week was really a big trial for me. I can barely handle leaving the house.

I am trying to calm down. I am lucky to have a boyfriend who is an angel. He got me to watch Glee and just relax. Haha. But I can't help but worry about how we're going to pay our bills. How I am going to keep my job. (My company is huge and impersonal and they have been giving me a tough time about being gone so I am worried about what they will do when they find out I was denied.) I hate putting my family through this stress... I was the one that made the money so me not working or getting benefits... Its the worst case scenario and I am really scared. I am 2 payments behind on my car payment. Time to hide the car! haha. I don't know, trying to keep a sense of humor about it.

Anyway, I am whining enough. If its ok when I appeal I might seek some more advice. If I have to get a lawyer I will. although I have no idea how I will afford one! Haha. Ahhh, life. It's such a kick in the pants (or ileum) sometimes.
10-06-2010, 04:53 AM   #7
Manimation
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Well if Glee helps...

This is funny but I'm in a very similar situation. I have been supporting my girlfriend living with me for 6 months now. She's had just shit luck on the job front so I am paying for E-VER-Y-THING. Which is ok, but I don't get any solitude and I'm an only child. I had a quarter life crisis when I turned 25 and all the stress and emotion activated my crohns for a good while. Admitedly not near the point where I am bedridden, but still pretty bad. My gut has just started to settle down this past week. And for the first time my unemployment insurance came through while I'm between gigs.

If you've changed physically, like lost lots of weight, or have terrible blood tests, those are usually admisable as evidence to support your claim if you have before and after photos. I have a friend with Fibromyalgia/Chronic Fatigue on disability and a big part of what helped him was a photo of him all muscley and in shape from 2008, and a recent photo of him at around 110 pounds. Pretty much got the job done.

I had a stress trigger built up where if i took a deep gulp, id get a burst of that sinking gut feeling right bellow my sternum. I'd never developed such a crazy trigger where mentally thinking about physical pain happening brought it about so instantly. When i'd be playing videogames or drawing and not thinking about it I'd never have it. Only when I had time to think.

Hopefully you'll be able to look back soon enough and just laugh at the ridiculousness of it all. I figured if I could come out of this crap with minimal scarring I'd be a much stronger wiser person afterwards, like a huge life experience upgrade.

Sorry for such a long response. This post just resonated with me due to the similar experiences. hope you're holding up! If you haven't restricted your diet down to rice and chicken and white bread now may be the moment!
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10-06-2010, 06:56 AM   #8
ACNewt
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Manimation--

Well your girlfriend is very lucky that you're there for her. The world really is tough to live in right now, especially on the job front. Adding something like Crohn's to the mix really spices things up even more.

I know what you mean about the stress trigger. It literally washes over me, I can physically FEEL it happening and nothing I can do to stop it.

But you're right, all you can do is keep a good sense of humor about everything and know that this somehow will make you stronger and/or better equipped to deal with even more BS that life will inevitably throw at us all.

I hadn't thought of the weight loss thing! I have lost 25 pounds in a month so I am going to keep that in mind. I am trying to get in to see my DR ASAP so we can get this appeal stuff going. Ugh.
10-06-2010, 07:41 AM   #9
2thFairy
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Like CrabbyRelish said, DO NOT mention your good days. It's not lying, it's omission. I also had a lawyer and this was stressed. Only talk about what you CANNOT do, not what you can do. It can be very degrading and humiliating, but then again, so is Crohn's/UC.
10-06-2010, 02:11 PM   #10
Manimation
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Kick their ass. Let us know how it goes!
10-06-2010, 02:30 PM   #11
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The only way Mike got through getting his Short Term Benefits was with his company fighting Cigna. Cigna paid one day the first time and denied the appeal. Mike returned to work with moderately severe Crohns, PG, Vascular Disease, a massive Deep Vein Thrombosis, a fistula and Osteoporosis. The PG grew and he went out on STD again. Cigna still tried to deny his claim. It took 2 years to win the battle of std. It should have been 6 months.
We hired an attorney for Social Security Disability. He was denied 1 time then approved.
He moved on to Long Term Disability with Cigna. Within 5 months they denied Mike again. 5 specialist in 2 states say that Mikes leg will be amputated upon return to work. Their case manager over ruled them without even looking at Mike. At this point he also has a torn Meniscus which cannot be operated on because he could develope another PG wound at the site of the incision.
Their excuse for the denial was no weight loss from the Crohns. I have it on tape.
We hired an attorney to fight them. They did reinstate his benefits. But Long Term is on a monthly review and can deny anytime they want.
I hope your battle is not as difficult and on going as ours. Read your benefits carefully. Keep good notes of your conversations with your disability company.
It has been emotionally draining for us. We sold a car, put our house on the market, and are currently living in my inlaws basement. This was the only way we knew we could get through this process of fighting SSD and LTD.
Mikes health has taken a beating from the stress.
SSD is now on a 2 year review. So make sure you are keeping a copy of all your medical records.
Kim
10-10-2010, 11:32 AM   #12
ACNewt
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The company that is rejecting me is Liberty Mutual. I got the official rejection in the mail today. It made me upset all over again. They said my symptoms shoudl not prevent me from doing my job which is sedentary. (I am on the phone all day.) However... yes, I have a sedentary job but I am in the bathroom every 5 minutes and vomiting and in pain. All the time. So it makes me sad. I am building my case to appeal but I just feel so broken and beaten down. Just really sad... I wish they could be me for just a day and see how bad it can be for us...
10-10-2010, 11:53 AM   #13
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My heart goes out to you. We have been there numerous times. The emotional stress these companies put on people is disgusting.
10-10-2010, 12:31 PM   #14
afman
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i have anenta short term disability threw my job and have claimed several claims and been approved for crohn's flare before.
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