Trying to appeal decision for Disability I Need Help

Hello Everyone,

I'm sorry I've been away for so long...some of you who remember me know why, but just to say I was diagnosed with cancer last year and I was a little preoccupied with that. I have been trying to heal, but the financial strain and stress is playing a big role with my health and we all no how stress affects our pain level. After almost 10 months I received the decision on my application for disability benefits and it was denied. I was devastated...I haven't asked for a review of the decision as this takes 3 months and if the answer remains the same then I can appeal. Their decision was rendered by saying the medical condition must be permanent. A disability is permanent if it is of indefinite duration with no possibility of improving. Obviously, they do not deem Fibromyalgia as incurable and indefinite duration. As we all know the struggles we have living with this illness and everyday is different. The stress of everything has pushed me into deep depression...I have a few thousand dollars in my bank account to cover my lease and bills until the end of June when my lease ends. Afterwards I have nothing. I have decided to send an application for review and they ask if I can supply documentation to support my claim.

I want to know if anyone know's of some reputable maybe even medical approved documentation to the effect that Fibro has no cure and what we live with daily. I know they will say there are things we can do to lessen our symptoms as well as meds, but we all know it may help a little, but it doesn't rid you of the numerous symptoms over and above the pain that comes with a fibromyalgia diagnosis. So please send me any links which you might think helpful in my quest.

Just so you all know I have decided to try for last resort financial assistance, but they will not even accept my application until I have less than $887. left in my bank account. I don't know how they expect me to pay my rent etc. afterward until they make there decision? This is a horrible situation. I have even looked into low income housing and it is a 3 1/2 year waiting period but I went in and made an application. Some may say why are your family helping...that just adds to my hurt and depression as I am not getting any help not even a place to stay. I guess they felt they did there part last year bringing me for my chemo and radiation treatments and and of course my 3 week stay in the hospital where they thought I would die. How do you go from that to saying things like get with the program and we have problems too. Therapy is hopefully going to help me deal with this. My daughter is only 21 but she is doing a little fundraiser/raffle offering gifts and services from the hairdressing salon she works at...bless her little did I get so blessed to have such a kind and loving soul for a daughter. My son is there, but really hasn't been much of a support and I know everyone handles things different, but this too has brought me heartache. It's just been a roller coaster of emotion and I'm pretty much alone aside from my daughter's support to deal with all of this. I have 2 little dogs which I adore and will not part with...I'll sleep in my car if I have to until I can get some kind of help, but what has the world come to? I am really so tired from two years of health problems which have prevented me from working and have depleted the rest of my retirement savings. Life just isn't fair sometimes is it? And I know many of you have felt and gone through the same things as I am. I'm a survivor and as challenging as all of this is I'll get through it all. I just was to live a stress free life and by the end of next week I hope to be told I'm cancer free!

Thank you all very much for reading this and I am truly sorry for the length of it all.

Gentle hugs and blessings,


I am sorry you are struggling, Sue. A disability attorney should be able to help you appeal the claim without taking any mooney up front. There is a clickable link to the Social Security Law Group on the Main Page of this website (right hand side of the page, scroll down). Perhaps they can help you. My very best wishes to you, and I hope things improve soon.

Hi dancermom,

Thank you for your suggestion and wishes very appreciated. I forgot to mention I am from Canada and worse from Quebec which has it's own set of rules in regard to disability benefits. We do not have lawyers to help us like you do in the U.S. I really wish we did! I am trying to find information that will help me to build a stronger case. I believe I should have been more specific as well as my doctor remarked that an evaluation in 2 years would be done. That didn't help as he should have put that I was unable to work period! You cannot mention that you might be able to work for an hour a have to say you are unable to do any job and you outline all your symptoms and how it affect your life. I will have to speak with my doctor about getting him to write another report and hope that he doesn't charge me $50. again!

Thank you again for taking the time to give me your advice.

Warm hug and gentle hug,


Get on the computer and type in fibromialgia/Canadian Women’s Health Network.
This gives you the definition for the disease, how it’s diagnosed, how the doctor will come to a diagnosis, all in Canada. It is the basic information.
Then begin a search for an accredited rheumetologist that specializes in fibromialgia.
Remove your money from the bank.
Search for resources in Canada for indigent status.
Research if there are different resources for homelessness due to medical complications.
You need a different doctor that will expedite your diagnosis.
I am so sorry you are in this position.
Best wishes and hang in there!!

Hugs Sue,

I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers.


Thank you Stacey_B very much appreciated.


Hi Tiffany,

Thank you for your suggestions...I will look into these and I am going to see my doctor soon and I am going to tell him what needs to be done. I'm sure he didn't realize by putting that in his report it didn't help. I know he doesn't want me to work and is supporting me to go for Welfare which I am in the process of doing to build a stronger case for disability benefits. I will definitely print out the definition of Fibromyalgia.

Best wishes to you,


Sue, Could you get your doctor to include chronic fatigue. Not that we want to play the system but that is something your doctor can say will not go away and it will be hard for you to work a set number of hours or days when you dont know what your energy level will be. Just a thought.



Hi Stacey,

That is a great suggestion and I feel it is the truth, but my doctor again did not include that, but I did in my remarks. I suppose that did not hold much as compared to the remarks of a doctor. They also also to include whether I have other symptoms or medications, therapy etc. that have changed since my original request and it has. I am now in therapy with a social worker for now as I am on a waiting list to see a psychologist. I am definitely in a deep depression and I am going to somehow get that acknowledged and hopefully in writing by my social worker as well as the doctor I saw at the hospital who gave me my evaluation and wanted me to go back on cymbalta. I do not have the money to go back on cymbalta even if I do get a reduction from the government. It is very expensive so for now I opt to remain on Lyrica which is a little more affordable in combination with an anti-depressant. So there are many symptoms and new treatments I am having. I just need some backing by the doctors otherwise like I said my word doesn’t seem to have as much as an impact. Thank you again for thinking of me and offering different suggestions for me to try. I obviously am not in the best of shape…I shake all the time, my pain is horrible with all the stress, not to mention the healing process from the radiation as it was directed in the anal region. Very sensitive and longer to heal because of it’s location. So I just have to get a little cooperation to re-build my case. I’ll keep you posted how things progress with my endeavours! :slight_smile:
Blessings to you Stacey and I pray for you that your pain lessens,

Also Sue, when I look on the Canadian Disability website, it said they would pay for your doctors evaluation up to $85 for your first evaluation report and $25 for your second. So if you have a reciept or can get your dr to submit that for you you might get a refund. I know its hard but keep the faith that you know your not well enough to return to work and this is just a game you have to play.

Gentle Hugs,

Stacey (and thanks for giving me something to research today. I love researching stuff, LOL)

Hi Sue,

I haven't been on much myself either. I think it's ok to bounce in and out. Sometimes we need help and sometimes we have enough to generously share. Sometimes we just don't. You are ok here!

I really am shocked that you didn't receive benefits. I was sure that with the cancer diagnosis they would not be able to deny you. I am so sorry.

I don't know anything about Canadian law. All I can do is tell you how my application went. When I applied I had spent a year prior taking notes about things that I wasn't able to do any longer. Like going grocery shopping with a list and spending 5 minutes reading it at each item I needed to pick out and then still coming home with the wrong items. I had just two years before watched my sons attorney as he poured through Rob's medical and school records, leaving no stone unturned. I understood the importance of the tiny and seemingly useless information to the case. I may have over prepared, but I received benefits on the first try. I'm not saying this to be boastful, but to stress the importance of the tiny things. You may remember that when my case was approved they did not give it to me for fibro, but for organic mental health issues.

Can you get records from any medical providers that were not included the first time? Can you add your own personal notes of (I'm sorry to go here) things that you have failed to be able to perform. Can you add letters from friends or maybe some of the other medical staff besides the doctor? Can you stress the difference in you ability to function since your cancer diagnosis? I'm just brain storming.

The records from your mental health provider are very important. Very, very important.

Your son may not understand the extent of your health and future financial problems. Maybe if you were to open up a little to him he would be there for you in a different way. I know, he's a man, and they tend not to be the best communicators.

Now excuse me while I go pick my jaw up off the floor. I am so in shock at the process and difficulty for you. It's not right.

Sue, you hang in there. I pray good things for you.

Hello Again!

I’m glad to hear Stacey that all the research you have been doing for me has given you something you love to do! You are a wealth of information and I’m so glad I posted here because honestly I am just so overwhelmed and between the fibro fog and apparently chemo does the same I really am not on the ball as I used to be. I misplace things, forget things, short term memory loss and worst yet lose my train of thought in mid sentence. I have even been stuttering and shaking…like yes I am working material!

Now that is something that I can get reimbursed for my doctors report! I paid him $50 and you would think he would have thought to give me a receipt…but don’t you worry I am going to be better prepared the next time I see him. Also, in my next therapy session next week I will find out if she and the other doctor could provide me documents to the effect I am in therapy. The website I found giving pointers on how to prepare and to build a strong case has been great! It says the more you can get documentation from a specialist, therapist etc. would be stronger than just your family doctor’s opinions. You are very sweet and have put a smile on my face! On another note and just to say I received some great news this morning via a text message and that was from my younger sister saying that she now realizes that when she suggested in January that maybe she could help with my cable bill which she never did. She said she sees it is going to take a lot more than that and is will to help me out financially as best she can. Don’t get me wrong I am very happy and appreciative of this kind gesture, but it comes as a complete surprise because basically neither my mom or sisters were giving me the time of day since after Xmas and I rarely heard anything from them and if I did and dare I mention something about it, I was told that they too had problems. My mom being the worst…so I have been learning not expect anything thing from them. To focus on my well-being and to try and heal with wounds from the past. I can’t deal with my mom and her nasty comments and have chosen to stay far away as possible! I am just not strong enough to put her in her place. That is one of the things therapy is helping me with! I felt today a little lighter today and didn’t push myself so hard today as in reality my pain was not great today.
Take good care of you!
Sue xx

Hi Kitty!

So nice to hear from you!! Yes, it is okay to come and go and still be able to meet up with friends we made when we first joined! :) Those are some very good points! I already had researched to how to better prepare to have a stronger case, but the part about getting comments from friends would be a good one. I am going to ask my therapist next week if she can write something about my depression and how all of this has taken it's toll. Bad enough dealing with Fibro, but the cancer just through over the top. When I filed last year, it was at the same time this tumour was growing and I was waiting to see a surgeon in anticipation of having this annoying growth removed, but never expecting it to be cancer. I was not at my best to be researching on how to better prepare and pretty much stood on the papers my Doctor submitted as well as comments from myself stating all the other symptoms I had over and above the pain. I can see now that my comments alone did have much impact. As you said I am going to say every symptom and how they affect my life. Along with the cancer it has just made many things worse. As a matter of fact the stress level is so much that a month ago I started losing my hair...saw my Onconogist and she says absolutely that after 4 months of my last chemo that it could be that. I have read that stress could be a factor as there is no other explanation. Oh and I am no long anemic! That might mean nothing to some people, but it is huge especially I wasn't prepared for this at this time! As my therapist says I am grieving so many things.

Kitty thank you so much for all of this and for your support and encouragement. I just want to get to a place of peace and no more stress. How are you doing? What brought you back on? Would love to hear more and if you prefer send me an email!

God Bless you Kitty you're an angel!

Sue xx

I will keep you in my prayers through your tough time.


Thank you Laurie…I do appreciate all the prayers I can get at this time.


Welcome back, Sue. it's so nice to see you and hear from you yet it's so disheartening to hear of your struggle and the refused disability application. Sooooooo...

Can you take most of your money out of the bank and then pay bills with cashier's checks? That way you could reach the goal of $887 sooner. Or how about paying your lease forward for several months? just a few ideas, maybe not helpful.

Sue, did you use a disability lawyer when you applied for disability? I did and was approved 1st time around. I know that's now how it always is but they helped so much. They knew which documents were the ones needed to prove my stupid disability. Crikey, it shouldn't be so hard in one state and so much easier in another!

I know what you mean about your little fur persons and i applaud your desire to keep them safe and with you.

I hope your cancer update goes well and you're free of cancer. That would be a GREAT boost to your morale!!!

When you apply for disability, you have to tell about ALL of the stupid things that go with it, depression, IBS, migraines, thyroid problems, osteo-arthritis, those sorts of things. Anything that you have that ties in with your fibro and causes you to be disabled.

If you really face eviction, let me know (beforehand) and I'll ask my sister if you can stay with us for a bit. Only problem is, there are a lot of stairs into the house then up to the spare room that used to be mine until I gave up on the loathed, steep stairs. No one should have to face being ill and being out on the streets. Bonus would be that my state has Romneycare, so you would be able to get insurance here. And even reapply for disability if you wish. only other problem is that we have seven dogs (hangs head in temporary shame) so you'd probably want to keep your little dogs up and away from them. Oh yeah and the three cats.



You are brilliant, Tiffany! This is excellent advice! How did you come up with all of it? Are you an advocate? If not, you should be. I was trying to find some links for getting the disability approved but your suggestion is better by far. All of them are spot on. Thank you, from all of us.


Hey, thanks! I’m the girly you bring to the protest with you. I support the underdog and can be very loud.


I found this today while looking at something from another discussion and thought it might help. Now this is for American disability but it might help in writing your letter.

How the SSA views fibromyalgia: Since July of 2012, when SSR 12-2P was issued, the SSA has had in place a specific guideline for awarding SSDI or SSI benefits to a patient with fibromyalgia. When making a determination about whether to award SSDI or SSI disability benefits to a fibromyalgia patient, the SSA will look not only at medical evidence to back up the diagnosis, but also the treatment protocols that the patient has tried prior to the application.

If a patient has only tried a single medication, with no medical evidence of additional pain and fatigue management methods that might allow he or she to perform job duties, the SSA might deny the application or delay consideration of it until the applicant can undergo additional treatments that might prove effective. The more varied a care approach is, the more likely the SSA is to award benefits if the patient, after multiple courses of treatment, is still so debilitated by fibromyalgia symptoms that he or she cannot work.

So maybe you need to list what you've done to manage your pain. Check out the website page to see what they suggest doing to manage the pain so you can add the things that you've already tried.



Thank's Stacey I will! You women have been absolutely amazing and your support and research I can not thank you enough!! From my heart I am profoundly touched!

Hugs and love,