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Pete trips again!
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 1899
   Posted 2/9/2009 5:39 AM (GMT -7)   
Dear friends,
After a serious bout of depression, my wife finally got through to me over the weekend that I'm killing myself working so much. I'm always bragging on here how I work over 50 hours a week w/ CP and how I'm able to do it. Well, she's right I can't do it anymore and in the long run I'm just making things much worse for myself. I always believed that a man's biggest responsability is to take care of his family and thats what I've tried to do no matter what the conciquenses were to myself or my health. I have so many problems w/ my body that should have been taken care of long ago but I just take more meds and trugg ahead not caring about the future as long as those pay checks kept rolling in. My boys are grown and gone and my wife is trying to start a new better life for us away from the traffic, crime and BS of S.E. Fla. out in the country. The biggest thing keeping me from being with her where I belong is this job. The future is scarry for all of us especially in these times but I've descided that the time has come for Pete to start taking care of Pete! So I've got lots to do in the near future. Before taking this job, I was on the path to getting SS Disability and I think thats what I'm going to do. Does anyone know if you can apply while you are still working or do you have to be unemployed? I think I know the answer and will start researching today but I'm just wondering. Thanks again to all and especially you who helped me this past weekend, you know who you are!!!
Your Friend & Brother,
Pete  
55 years old, Surgury, Radical Prostatectomy 8/20/03, PSA 6.6, Gleason 3 + 3 = 6, Adenocarcinoma extent (moderate) Stage & Margin:T2NOMX, No Metastases, Organ Confined, bone scan: Neg. 3 1/2 years of depression after surgery prior to Hypogonadizm DX, Testosterone Theropy (Testim Gel)since 12/06 but switched to a higher dose of (Androgel) 6/08. 55 and still alive and so glad to still be here to see my two sons grow up to be fine young men. They are both serving in the US Navy, one on an aircraft carrier heading for Hong Kong and the other on a Gator Freighter stationed in Norfolk, Va. I am one proud PaPa! 


Tirzah
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 2283
   Posted 2/9/2009 11:53 AM (GMT -7)   
Pete,
I'm not sure about FL, but I was told in my state at least that you need to be out of work for 12 continuous months to qualify for SS Disability. If that's the case there's probably not much benefit to starting the application while you're still working.

Good luck with everything! Hopefully rules are different in FL!
frances

Pete trips again!
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 1899
   Posted 2/9/2009 12:39 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Frances,
Thanks for the reply. I think your right but not sure about the 12 month wait. I was checking it out on their web site for Florida and it stated that you must be out of work to aply but I didn't read anywhere about the 12 month wait. It did say that it would take 4 - 6 months for them to give you a YE or NA on your first app. I just kid of skimmed through it as I'm at work and get alot of phone calls even though we are so slow. It's going to be a really hard thing for me to do, leave this job without even knowing if I'm qualified for SSDI but from talking to doctors and a SS shyster the last time, they said I wouldn't have a problem w/ my health, age and work history. I don't think they will think I'm trying to get away w/any shannannagins at my age but you never know! I just have to get it into my mind that this job is really killing me! Another thought is to have as much fixed AE: hip replacement, knee replacement, back or neck surgery, shoulder surgery while I'm still here under their insurance and covered by Aflac??? It sound kind of wrong but I guess if it were anyone else who had any one of these ailments, they wouldn't think twice about it. The only problem w/ that idea is where can I do my recovery & theropy? I wouldn't want to have it here, alone! Lots to think about, any suggestions would be more than welcome!!!
Thanks again Frances, you've got the light bulb lit over my head now!!!
Pete
55 years old, Surgury, Radical Prostatectomy 8/20/03, PSA 6.6, Gleason 3 + 3 = 6, Adenocarcinoma extent (moderate) Stage & Margin:T2NOMX, No Metastases, Organ Confined, bone scan: Neg. 3 1/2 years of depression after surgery prior to Hypogonadizm DX, Testosterone Theropy (Testim Gel)since 12/06 but switched to a higher dose of (Androgel) 6/08. 55 and still alive and so glad to still be here to see my two sons grow up to be fine young men. They are both serving in the US Navy, one on an aircraft carrier heading for Hong Kong and the other on a Gator Freighter stationed in Norfolk, Va. I am one proud PaPa! 


PAlady
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 6795
   Posted 2/9/2009 12:42 PM (GMT -7)   
Pete,
There are some others here who know more than I (way more!), but I think you only have to wait 6 months to apply. But I think you may have to be out of work for at least a year before you can receive it. I don't know so I really shouldn't be chiming in. I will say that I DO know the struggle to acknowledge the need to appy for disability. It's not easy. I'm still in a tug of war with myself, because is so, so hard to let go, even though work already let go of me (I got laid off over a year ago and am only working a few hours a week now).

The psychological piece of acceptance is a huge part of the pie, at least for me.

One other thought I had re: your other thread. Remember hormone levels can wreak havoc with moods (we women know this well!), so along with your anti-depressant check, remember to let whoever's prescribing that know about your testosterone level fluctuations.

PaLady

Post Edited (PAlady) : 2/9/2009 12:46:36 PM (GMT-7)


Pete trips again!
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 1899
   Posted 2/9/2009 1:19 PM (GMT -7)   
Pa, your so right, Thanks! I also have let go for a long time my thyroid! Which I talked to my personal Doc last week, infact he is not going to consider changing my anti depression meds untill my thyroid tests come back! Yikes! They tell me that all these hormonal things are connected too! I had my thyroid removed about 10 years ago w/ a very nonagressive cancer which grew all around it and was the size of an egg. The dumb thing is stopped going to my Endocronologist after a couple years and have been on the same dose of synthoid ever since. Another DA by Pete! So I'm having a thuro physical either this week or next after my little surgery. But I have to run to get up to my pain Doc now! Good old I-95 north to West Palm Bch> death Hyw. I'll post later<> Thanks again!!!
Your hormonal friend,
Pete
55 years old, Surgury, Radical Prostatectomy 8/20/03, PSA 6.6, Gleason 3 + 3 = 6, Adenocarcinoma extent (moderate) Stage & Margin:T2NOMX, No Metastases, Organ Confined, bone scan: Neg. 3 1/2 years of depression after surgery prior to Hypogonadizm DX, Testosterone Theropy (Testim Gel)since 12/06 but switched to a higher dose of (Androgel) 6/08. 55 and still alive and so glad to still be here to see my two sons grow up to be fine young men. They are both serving in the US Navy, one on an aircraft carrier heading for Hong Kong and the other on a Gator Freighter stationed in Norfolk, Va. I am one proud PaPa! 


Tirzah
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 2283
   Posted 2/9/2009 1:19 PM (GMT -7)   
Pete,
If you can handle getting a bunch of surgeries in a row & your doctors are game for it, I say go for it! That's what insurance is there for. You've probably already put it off longer than most people. What else are the insurance companies going to do with all that money except lose it all in the stock market?! lol I say it would be a much better benefit both to you & society for you to get the help you need. If you were having fake surgeries or just doing stupid stuff to run up the tab that would be one thing, but from everything you've written so far it sounds like you have a legitimate medical reason for any or all of those procedures.

Keep in mind that you can always buy COBRA for at least 18 months after you leave a position (no matter the reason why). You would have to pay the entire premium, but I know from my own experience that sometimes it's cheaper to pay a $500/month premium than to go with skimpier coverage. You can call your health insurance provider to see whether they will cover treatment in another state. A lot of them do so it's at least worth the phone call. If they say "no", explain your situation with your wife & needing her care and ask how you can appeal their decision. Keep moving up the food chain until you get a "yes" and then make sure you get something in writing before you do anything crazy. :P Some insurance people are just sticks in the mud, but others have enough power to genuinely review your condition & decide that it would be in their best financial interest to agree to pay for the therapy where you are getting enough help that you can recover more quickly. If worse comes to worst, I do know some people who "rent" out a spare bedroom in exchange for a personal care assistant. Obviously you need to be very careful with that & get plenty of references, but a good friend of mine got the idea from one of her friends & both of them got really good PA's who helped them with dressing & bathing & medication & cooking and all that good stuff in exchange for a free place to live for 6 months or so and a little bit of spending money. Maybe it could work. No need to be miserable during the time you've most looked forward to your entire working life. Retirement is meant to be enjoyed, so if some surgeries or procedures or whatnot can help, go for it!

Alternatively, perhaps you could consider going on an extended Leave of Absence. My company let me do that for a while last year & it meant they continued to pay their portion of my benefits as long as I was on LOA. There is no pay for it, no absolute guarantee your job will be waiting for you when you're ready to return & I'm not sure how it would affect any retirement benefits you might otherwise qualify for, but maybe it's worth looking into. Unlike all the nightmare mountain of paperwork I need for everything else, for an LOA all I needed was a note from my doc stating I was under his continuous care & how long I would be out of commission.

blessings,
frances

mom9mom
Regular Member


Date Joined Sep 2008
Total Posts : 489
   Posted 2/9/2009 2:04 PM (GMT -7)   
smilewinkgrin   smilewinkgrin smilewinkgrin Pete happy to hear that you are doing what is best for you.I do not know about Fl. but in Idaho you do not have to be off work 12 months before you can file you just have to have something wrong enough with you that you will not be able to work for a full year and your Dr. must be willing to back this up.If you are approved for S.S. you do not receive any money for the first 6 months.I hope this has helped you,and good luck with all of the surgery's that you need.
Lost half of my small intestineJan.2008.Ilieostomy for 5 months then reverst in June 2008,Nerve damage to right leg,part of my right hip bone removed Jan. 2008,Cronic pain,hernia,infection in my back called discites,and depression.Gallbladder removed Nov,2008.Surgery to fuse L3 and L4 vertabra Dec. 31,2008.Mother to 9 kids 7 boys 2 girls and 1 stepson.4 grandsons,9 grandaughters.4 of my grandkids I inherited from my twin sister who passed away 6 1/2 years ago from a blood clot after surgery.God has given me my life back after I almost lost it.Even though its a painful and sometimes hard road to walk I take it one step at a time and give thanks to god for every step I take.


PAlady
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 6795
   Posted 2/9/2009 2:04 PM (GMT -7)   
OMG Pete, low thyroid levels have similar symptoms to depression. You definitely need to keep on top of that! Maybe you could keep regular check ups with one doc who at least would do all the testing for you and you wouldn't have to run around to specialists unless it was necessary.

Good luck!

PaLady

Tirzah
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 2283
   Posted 2/9/2009 2:10 PM (GMT -7)   
Pete,
Have you had your B-vitamin level checked recently? I need to start back on the B-complex vitamins myself b/c they're too low & doc said that can cause fatigue & depression-like symptoms. Some people have to get shots for their B-vitamins if they're very low, but mine are high enough I can just take care of it orally (I hope).

good luck! I'm off to the PM myself for these evil nightmarish headaches. I tell ya, if it's not one thing it's the other. :|

peace,
frances

straydog
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 13473
   Posted 2/9/2009 2:33 PM (GMT -7)   
Pete,
 
No, I would not be working and applying for SSD at the same time. That would send up a red flag in my opinion. It would be like why is this man applying if he can work, see what I mean.  You will also need your dr behind you 500% about being off of work and you will need to be taken off work by a dr. Thats how they determine a date that disability began.
 
Working and chronic pain is probably one of the hardest things I ever did. I stayed totally stressed trying to look and act of the role of someone being just fine, not a person wracked with pain. But, my disability is not for CP, mine is related to crohns disease. My gastro is the one that medically retired me. Your disability has to be expected to last at least 12 months if not permanently. I waited about 3 months before applying then received my first check after being off about 7 months. Now, you if get awarded benefits its possible to get payment at the 6 month mark instead of the 12 month rule. They changed the law on that. It has helped alot of people with this new ruling because if I am going to be off more than 12 months why make me wait that long before being paid monthly checks.
 
Retirement, its a whole new ballgame even when its a medical retirement. I still do alot of things like I did when I worked, do laundry in the evenings, go grocery shopping in the evening, old habits are hard to break.
 
I don't know how long your wife has been away from you. But, if you plan on moving to where she is, believe me this will be really hard on both of you. She has her routine of what she does every day alone. If another person happens on the scene sometimes it can rock the entire boat.My husband retired two yrs ago and I still am not use to him being here every day,lol. Nerve wracking to say the least. lol.
 
Good luck in whatever directon you decide to go........Susie
 
 


Pete trips again!
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 1899
   Posted 2/9/2009 6:27 PM (GMT -7)   
Oh boy, I just wrote a book to Y'all and when I submitted it, it took me to the login screen. I tried with my correct login and it wouldn't let me in! How frustrating. I spent an hour of typing my two fingers off for nothing!! Oh I'm pissed, I didn't need thi
s now. Has it happened to anyone else? GRRRRR!!!
Sorry, I'm so pissed off at this crap!!
55 years old, Surgury, Radical Prostatectomy 8/20/03, PSA 6.6, Gleason 3 + 3 = 6, Adenocarcinoma extent (moderate) Stage & Margin:T2NOMX, No Metastases, Organ Confined, bone scan: Neg. 3 1/2 years of depression after surgery prior to Hypogonadizm DX, Testosterone Theropy (Testim Gel)since 12/06 but switched to a higher dose of (Androgel) 6/08. 55 and still alive and so glad to still be here to see my two sons grow up to be fine young men. They are both serving in the US Navy, one on an aircraft carrier heading for Hong Kong and the other on a Gator Freighter stationed in Norfolk, Va. I am one proud PaPa! 


Scarred_for_life
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 1559
   Posted 2/9/2009 6:40 PM (GMT -7)   
Deep breath Pete. it'll be ok just relax. Sending you big hugs.

Scarred
What doesn't kill us only makes us fight back harder! :P


Pete trips again!
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 1899
   Posted 2/10/2009 12:25 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Everyone,
Last night I answered all your questions and coments and this forum booted me out and wouldn't let me back in. I lost what was probably the longest post I've ever written here and beleive me, I was hot! It was during the Pres news confrence and I was listening to him in one ear while writing. I don't have time to rewrite it all now as I'm not suposed to be doing this at work anyway but it's slow today. My boss told me today that I could work the extra hours that were my overtime and use them for comp time when I'm out next week from my surgery! I thought that was kind of nice even though I'm only getting 1hr for 1hr when anything over 40hrs should be 1hr for 1.5 hrs off just like overtime but I'm not complaining. It's more than I though I'd get. Anyway, back to the grind!
Thanks for all your caring posts>
Your Big or little but larger brother!
Pete
55 years old, Surgury, Radical Prostatectomy 8/20/03, PSA 6.6, Gleason 3 + 3 = 6, Adenocarcinoma extent (moderate) Stage & Margin:T2NOMX, No Metastases, Organ Confined, bone scan: Neg. 3 1/2 years of depression after surgery prior to Hypogonadizm DX, Testosterone Theropy (Testim Gel)since 12/06 but switched to a higher dose of (Androgel) 6/08. 55 and still alive and so glad to still be here to see my two sons grow up to be fine young men. They are both serving in the US Navy, one on an aircraft carrier heading for Hong Kong and the other on a Gator Freighter stationed in Norfolk, Va. I am one proud PaPa! 


skeye
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 2976
   Posted 2/10/2009 2:16 PM (GMT -7)   
Oh, Pete, I'm so sorry you've been having such a rough time lately. I've been going through a similar thing with deciding whether or not to call it quits with school. This type of decision is by no means an easy one to make, in fact I really haven't been able to make a decision (I know the decision that I should make, but I'm too terrified to make it), which I suppose is a decision in itself. Is there any way that you could reduce your hours instead of quitting working completely? Maybe a reduced workload would be a little less stressful and painful for your poor body, at least temporarily until you make your final decision? I honestly know nothing about the process of gaining disability.

Skeye

donnaeil
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2006
Total Posts : 1156
   Posted 2/11/2009 12:08 AM (GMT -7)   
I suggest that you call a lawyer to discuss this issue. YOu need someone who understands the legalities of this situation.

Donnaeil

edt
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 773
   Posted 2/11/2009 5:52 AM (GMT -7)   

Pete,

Regarding SSD....I had Cervical Fusion in 2000, went back to work and continued to work for 3 more years.  During this time, I did NOT take Pain meds during the day but as soon as I walked in my door I did everything I could to reduce the pain.  This is how I lived my life, working all day, hoping for relief at night with meds.  All of this was documented, when I decided to stop working I made an appointment with SS and a Pain Rehab Dr., prior 3 year medical records in hand.  I also had my boss a Family Practice M.D. write a letter explaining what he observed since the surgery.  When I had my interview with SSD, the clerk told me having continued to work in severe pain would play a big part in the outcome.

It sounds to me like everyone at your work place has seen what you live everyday, you have documentation, get your appointment and get it done!  It was my worst day to finally admit that I had had enough but once done a big weight will be lifted.  You have so many problems, you DESERVE to do this for yourself.  We who live in chronic pain wear out our Adrenals which in turn shuts down the hormone system, hence, weight gain, depression and so on.  Its time for you to give in and allow some relief in to your life.  Stay on Cobra as long as possible it takes 25 months once approved on SSD for Medicare to kick in!

Go for it!!!

edt


Pete trips again!
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 1899
   Posted 2/11/2009 8:22 AM (GMT -7)   
Skeye, I'd rather have all my problems any day than have my eye go crazy like yours, it must be just horrable trying to pay attention in class w/ eye pain. I remember swimming back when I was in high school we had to practice at 5:00am in the basement of the local YMCA where the janitor would put way too much clorine in the pool the night before. Back in the days before competitive goggles and our coachs back then all had football mentallities. If you didn't tough it out, you were less than a man! So we would end up in class with our eyes going crazy w/ pain and tears. The teachers would get mad and call the coach which did nothing. Anyway, Donnaeil, Yes, I will definitly get a lawyer to put me on the right track. EDT, It's going to take a while to get all my ducks in a row. I'm going to have cervical & lombar MRI's as soon as I can schedule them as I haven't had them done in years! I also am going to get records from a bunch of doctors who have treated me over the years. After my surgery next week, I'm going to try to find a good shrink and have him / her get all my records from my past shrinks to prove I'm wacked! I ghave quite a history w/ doctors, so it's going to take a while. I want to get it right the first time. I'm thinking maybe around Spring time I may leave work unless something else happens before then!
Thanks for all your support !
pittyfull Pete
55 years old, Surgury, Radical Prostatectomy 8/20/03, PSA 6.6, Gleason 3 + 3 = 6, Adenocarcinoma extent (moderate) Stage & Margin:T2NOMX, No Metastases, Organ Confined, bone scan: Neg. 3 1/2 years of depression after surgery prior to Hypogonadizm DX, Testosterone Theropy (Testim Gel)since 12/06 but switched to a higher dose of (Androgel) 6/08. 55 and still alive and so glad to still be here to see my two sons grow up to be fine young men. They are both serving in the US Navy, one on an aircraft carrier heading for Hong Kong and the other on a Gator Freighter stationed in Norfolk, Va. I am one proud PaPa! 

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