I'm back! Monthly Topic: Getting Disability/SSI

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Got a new pc and I'm ready to get back into the swing of things!

For those who don't know what Disability/SSI are, or who are too young to have to know,
Disability Benefits and SSI are things you could do if you were too stressed by DID to work.

I know that there are lots of you here who regularly go to work and school, and that's AWESOME! XD
However, there are many who don't have any alters capable of holding down a job, or have alters that are too dangerous/chaotic/etc to keep a job. In this case, you could apply for Disability/SSI (in the US). For those living outside the US, if you have some form of benefits granted by the government, please share with us!

Please note that I am not saying you are disabled if you have DID. That is NOT what I'm saying. What I'm saying is that some people with DID cannot work due to extreme circumstances, and that the Government will not help out unless they claim to be disabled by their life with DID. Disabled here, only means that one cannot have a routine day-to-day life that involves the ability to have a job, do chores, be hygienic, go to school, have social lives, etc... Not all of those need to be missing, but even if you just can't work, or just can't have a normal/healthy life, the Government can grant you money to supplement what you cannot get yourself.

To start off, I will list a few commonly asked questions, then ask a few myself.

1.  Can anyone apply?
Yes, everyone can apply but not everyone is accepted. It depends on if you qualify for benefits, usually if you can work or not.

2. How do I start the process?
Google your state/countries disability benefits program, if you don't know what it's called where you are, I'm sure if you googled "disability benefits in ____" you will probably come up with whatever it is called where you are. On their home page at the website, there should be a link to an application, and even a list to estimate if you qualify. There should also be a phone number to call if you have any questions.

3.  How long will the whole process take?
This varies for everyone. I believe at first they say "up to 6 months" depending on how soon you finish your application and finding all the evidence you need to support your claim. They do have a deadline though, so don't take too long sending everything in.

4.  How much money will I receive?
That really depends on what the government decides and who with/where you live. In Texas, USA, if you're a war veteran with PTSD, generally between an estimated $800-1000/month.

Now for questions I ask you to help others:

1.  If you or a loved one have applied for disability, even if you didn't get it, what was your experience? How did this affect you and those you loved?

2.  If you've received benefits, what is your advice to those who are seeking to get benefits, too?

Dealing with the Government can be kinda scary and overwhelming, so if we stick together and help each other out, we can all get through it!
If you have any questions or need help finding your state/countries benefits programs, message me and I will do what I can. :)

Until next time-
Your mod, Alice :heart:
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LB-Lee's avatar
This seems to be long defunct, but may we have permission to host a local copy of this discussion on our website, healthymultiplicity.com?  It was a big help to me, and I feel it'd be helpful to others.

...I think this place is pretty dead though... <.<

Unobsequious's avatar
We are currently working on our SSI claim. Our biggest reason for applying isn't DID, but it's part of it... But I must say, it's NOT at ALL an easy process. We have been fighting for almost ten years. We had to start over a month ago, because our last set of lawyers were inept. It's stressful, and the judges can be absolutely cruel. Our rejection letter the last time was basically "you're a liar, go find a job".
Child-of-Horus's avatar
Ten years?! Seriously? Holy freakin' hell... That doesn't sound right. :/ I really hope you can figure stuff out. Best of luck to you guys!
Unobsequious's avatar
Yes... Onset of disability was ten years old. Filing began when I was about 16. We are now 24. It's been a very long, sad process. The judges are part of the problem.

Thank you for the luck. It will be needed.
Stegasuar-Henry's avatar
My boyfriend and his mother are both diagnosed DID. I am undiagnosed, and have a thankfully moderate case. I have alters that can work, socialize, etc....as well as being able to do it myself.
His mother is on disability, and has had quite the time with going through disability.
You need all sorts of doctors reccomendations...And even if you fit the bill, it still takes a while to clear through the paperwork.
It's not scary if you stay calm and try to find a good case worker :) (though it is super frustrating...>_< )
My only experience though is only with Nevada...It might be easier, or harder depending on the state.
Child-of-Horus's avatar
We're in Texas...so it might be harder. Easier for vetrans because they have a major back-log in cases and need to clear them out because they're vetrans. BUT here's hoping that disability for mental disorders not caused by war gets looked at more, too! >.<
The-Orchestra-System's avatar
in the UK we have something called Disability Living Allowance (DLA) and Employment & Support Allowance (ESA) for people who arent able to work, whether it's long or short term it doesnt matter.

1. If you or a loved one have applied for disability, even if you didn't get it, what was your experience? How did this affect you and those you loved?
i applied last year for both ESA and DLA and for the most part it was a positive, quick and easy process. my mum called up for me and they sent forms to me with questions about what i can or cant do and what my experiences and diagnoses are etc, i sent them back and then just waited for an acceptance or rejection letter basically.

DLA was very very easy, they basically called up and asked how long things had been this way for me and then replied back with an acceptance letter and telling me how much i'll get (£144 a month which is roughly $280).

ESA was similar, i started off with £360 ($710-ish). then after a medical assessment to see if my answers were consistent with the form i filled out and just to answer further questions i ended up getting it increased to about £404 a month ($800-ish). though the medical assessment itself was horrible. i'm terrified of medical-type situations and places as it is so that didnt help and i was switchy and dissociated, i needed to bring a stuffed animal with me and couldnt look at the doctor. he asked what DID is caused by and when i said trauma he asked what trauma i'd been through as if it was easy to say, i answered eventually and he didnt comment or look sympathetic or anything he just moved on to the next question. so that experience wasnt pleasant at all but i guess because it was so horrible it just amplified my PTSD and dissociative symptoms which may have worked in my favour :/

i will say though, i did have a negative experience with a friend who didnt believe in my diagnosis and told me i didnt deserve to be recieving money when i'm just making things up. that was an argument that lasted 2 days on and off. needless to say we arent friends anymore.

2. If you've received benefits, what is your advice to those who are seeking to get benefits, too</b?
really, the main thing i have to say is dont be ashamed or afraid to try to apply. if you cant work or study then you're entitled to some help, dont be too proud to accept it okay? some people may object to it, but who are they to say what you are and arent capable of or entitled to. it's okay to need help, it's okay to ask for hlep and it's definitely okay to recieve help.
LB-Lee's avatar
Wow, this is really timely; we're working on our SSDI app right now. (Not for DID; other mental health issues have lost us our job and our home, the past few months.) Obviously, we're still going through the system, so have nothing to add, but we really appreciate what other folks have supplied so far.

(In our case, I'm pretty sure we'll get it, because we somersaulted through two clinics and a couple therapists and got on meds, so lots of records. The key is just how long it'll take; I was told it on average takes a year. I'm not even thinking about how I'll keep us going for that long.)

Child-of-Horus's avatar
Try to find a decent lawyer, is what I heard. When you google disability law firms, make sure to cross-check that with reviews of that firm. Ever see those commercials for Binder&Binder? Ripoff Report has TONS of horrid reviews from them. Generally, they(gov't/ssi people) might even assign you their own lawyer hired by them. They all should work on the basis that they only get money if you win your case and get paid. It's usually 25% or up to a max of $6k. But it looks like you have a lot of records that could help. So maybe you won't even need a lawyer.

Either way, we feel ya, guys. And we'll pray to the balance of the universe that you'll get your upswing in good luck soon! You guys are strong, and I know that you'll get through it. ^_^ Take care, Rogan!
LB-Lee's avatar
Thankfully, the law firm would be one recommended by our local therapist, so we're willing to take his word for it that they're not sharks. We also have a lawyer roommate/friend who can give us a hand.

And thanks, I'm pretty sure we'll be okay. We're set for the next couple months, I think, so it's just hanging on, hanging in there, and trying to sell as much art as possible. Now that we actually have internet at home again, it should be easier.

Child-of-Horus's avatar
So glad to hear. ^_^
RhayvenNite's avatar
1. If you or a loved one have applied for disability, even if you didn't get it, what was your experience? How did this affect you and those you loved?

I wound up getting it. Eventually. I was eligible since the age of 16, however dad made too much. I tried for 3 years before finally getting it...It hit hard. It frustrated the -hell- out of me, depressed me, and landed me in the psych center a few times.

2. If you've received benefits, what is your advice to those who are seeking to get benefits, too?


You will save SOO Much headache and heartache.

Legally, they cannot be paid unless you win benefits. They can only get up to so much, as well. It is -so- worth it, though! Very much so!
Child-of-Horus's avatar
I figured a lawyer would help, problem is how to go about getting one and how do you know which ones are the best ones??
RhayvenNite's avatar
Yellow pages helped me. I got lucky and knew one that had helped the family.

Looking in the yellow pages, and calling around would be the best. Ones who work from the start ((That is, don't require you to fill out the paperwork, and wait to get denied)) IMO are usually the best. Usually indicates a small firm, probably someone who self-owns. Compared to the others - Who are usually big firms, and less caring about the client, and more caring about the money.

From my experience - If someone is willing to work with you from the Get-Go, they are probably more focused on helping people. And the money is a plus. ((That's how mine was <3 She was amazing, really caring. Always lectured at me if I had cut :P))

LB-Lee's avatar
Thanks for the advice! I've had a law firm recommended to me, so once shit calms down here a bit and I have more gas in the tank, I'll maybe pay them a visit.

RhayvenNite's avatar
Alrighty! Hope it all works out for ya :)
Child-of-Horus's avatar
Gotcha! I will look around. :3 Also, I will look at reviews about the people, too. That always helps. Thanks so much! :glomp:
RhayvenNite's avatar
You're very welcome :)

And hope it helps out!
Child-of-Horus's avatar
It seems that they already appointed a disability lawyer to him...?
I hope it's not just some dime-a-dozen-one-who-doesn't-care lawyer.
RhayvenNite's avatar
I would hope so too :/

It took a year - start to finish - to get everything settled out. It wouldn't have taken AS long, but they fucked up when they were scheduling who I needed to see ((A Physical Therapist rather than a Psychiatrist.))
tacdgb's avatar
I took a 3 hour mental health evaluation to get help. I get help with DRV. It's a program that helps disabled people find work. I get to work 8 to 12 hours a week as that is what my mental health evaluation and my Therapist said. When I checked into SSI I was was told that I would need to see a dr for proof of my disability. But with living on my ex's part income I make to much for SSI but too poor so I need the added income. So yes you do have to have the evaluation. I went through it and it was not too bad. Would do it again to get the help I need. it is so worth it.
Child-of-Horus's avatar
How about how to answer/react to questions without accidentally giving the evaluator the impression that it's schizophrenia instead of DID? Because sometimes DID is often mistaken for schizophrenia--I know that some people can see their alters outside the head, and head their headmates' voices inside the head...but schizophrenics hear/see things OUTside the head, and sometimes believe they are certain people. Usually famous, but still. How do you avoid being misdiagnosed by the evaluator?
A-Being-Of-Fable's avatar
Hey darlin', I just had some questions about this- do ya have to be diagnosed to get this money? And do ya know where we need to go to check this out? - Julee
Child-of-Horus's avatar
It's just WAY more helpful to be already diagnosed. If you're not, I'd assume you'd have to be evaluated by their hired psychologist to make a diagnosis--but then you're risking a wrong diagnosis. From my experience, most people hired by the government to do evaluations often misdiagnose DID for schizophrenia. The differences are the schizophrenics hallucinate things outside the head--DID is hearing voices/seeing alters INside the head. Schizophrenics also believe they are certain people...like famous people, already dead famous people, etc... So really having a previous diagnosis is the safest route.
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