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Living With Fibromyalgia - Online Support Group

Don't make my mistake

#1

Hello all. I wanted to share my experience,me specially my mistakes so others will not make the same mistakes as I did. Hoping this helps someone.

I was diagnosed in 1998, when doctor’s and insurance companies did not understand Fibromyalgia. I had been working for a major Retailer for over 10 years and had great benefits. I became sick “overnight”. I was put on temporary disability through the company, paying me 60% of my salary. I could have stayed on it for 3 years.
Anxious to get back to work after 9 months, my doctor said, “whatever you want”. I thought that going back to work would get my mind off of my illness. Mistake!
My employer agreed to accomidations for me ( extra breaks, stool in my work area, etc). All was well. Then one day I went in and the company had been sold. The new corporate office said, no special accomidations. I was shattered. I asked about going back on leave and was told no. I was ignorant of my rights and was forced to quit. Thinking that I would get better I did not file for disability. Mistake!
Soon after I was in a major car accident which consumed my life for 3 years.
When I thought about filing it was too late and even if I had filed, SS did not recognize Fibro ( at that time).
Also, about a year in to this journey BC/BS decided that I needed no more treatment for my condition. Thankfully, I had a doctor who fought for me.

Thinking that we will get better is a nice dream but don’t count on it as I did. I am lucky to have a spouse who can support us but what if I did not?
Fight for what you rightfully are entitled to.

#2

Hi there. I was wondering you said that you waited too long....does that mean that you have to apply right after you stop working or you can't get it. I reduced my work hours a lot, but feel as if i may be just delaying things. My husband took up a second job to help cover the slack. I had a very physically taxing job. Thanks in advance i appreciate it!! Blessings, Janis

#3

Hi Janisrp,

"Waiting too long" can affect the amount of money you are eligible to receive on SSDI. It is based on a complicated formula the government has but basically they look at the amount of work credits you have accumulated over the past 10 years. So if you decrease your hours and are only working part time, you will have fewer work credits. Also, there are two types of disability programs, SSDI and SSI. You must have paid into the Social Security system in order to qualify for SSDI. Do you know if you are eligible for SSDI?

Starr

#4

No I have not. I just recently had to pretty pretty much quit. I wasn't able to continue my job as I had a physically taxing job. I'm 25 and didn't start working until I was 19. I also took off time for both my pregnancies, so i'm sure i wouldn't have many work credits......

#5

I think you can apply to both SSID and SSI concurrently. If you don’t have enough work credits for SSDI, then you would be applying for SSI. But it is a needs based program and if your husband is working that may reduce your payment. The max payment is usually around $400 per month, depends on your state.
Here is a good site I found:
http://www.disabilitysecrets.com/counting-marital-income.html

If you are applying on the basis of fibromyalgia, make sure your condition has been diagnosed by a specialist, usually a rheumatologist. It helps if you have any other diagnosis like arthritis. That same website has info on applying with Fibro.

Of course, you might want to consider hiring a disability attorney to guide you through the process.
Good luck,
Starr