It was suggested to me to go on disability when I was diagnosed. I bristled at the idea, I felt like I was still a useful person and could work, if I could find a job. Eventually, I did get a job and I’ve been working ever since. I think the main idea for me going on disability at the time was that I could go on medicare. Looking back, I probably couldn’t have gotten disability benefits at all, or if I did, it would have taken quite a while for them to kick in.
I think a lot of my reaction came from growing up with lots of stories of fraudsters trying to get out of work. My mother faced a seemingly never-ending stream of people faking injuries and incapacitation. I was doing some research into disability insurance when all of those stories came flooding back to me. One of the advice forums about disability insurance was filled with dodgy claims. The most egregious was a guy claiming PTSD from being fired from his last job. Really?
I know I shouldn’t let it get to me, but I really don’t want to be lumped in with people like that. I’ll admit to having days where I don’t think I’ll be able to keep working and I understand the temptation to give up and claim disability. Two things have kept me from going there. First of all, there would be a substantial pay cut. I have insurance, but it would still be a 30% cut in pay. The way disability insurance works, they will pay you a certain percentage of your salary and when you go on social security disability, they will pay the difference between what SS pays and the percentage of your pay. The main reason I dont want to go on disability ‘s that I just don’t believe that everyone else should pay because I have a hard time at work. So far, my awful days come and then they go. I can work, and I’m pretty damn good at what I do. If I get to the point where I just can’t work at all, I’ll have to go on disability. Let’s hope that day never comes….
PTSD from getting fired? I’m still pissed about that…