Working vs. disability?

New Topic Post Reply Printable Version
37 posts in this thread.
Viewing Page :
 1  2 
[ << Previous Thread | Next Thread >> ]

couchtater
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 14475
   Posted 1/18/2012 7:07 PM (GMT -6)   
I have a question about working vs. disability....
Right now I'm working a 40 hour week in 4 days (teaching).
I'm worried about my career in teaching. My boss is fairly understanding about my limits and I've filed a ADA with him.
My problem is my system will be closing two of the schools in the district and consolidating the two schools into the remaining three. My school is on the chopping block. I'm scared of my job security and that they will be increasing my class size and taking away my para-pro. shocked
 
I need extra help in the classroom. There are days I'm so fatigued I teach from my chair and she is my legs. Some days my mind is fuzzy and I forget things. confused
 
I don't want to stop teaching but it's scary to see me trying to function under more stress. I'll probably have a new boss and I'll have to go through getting adjusted to them which is more stressful. smhair
 
Are most of you able to work full time?
Joy

aimsgirl16
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 1470
   Posted 1/18/2012 7:15 PM (GMT -6)   
I was able to work full time until July of last year. It was very difficult to stop working but it was necessary for my health. You work in the US? Then you should get your FMLA filled out. You have to work "full time" to get it which you do. And once FMLA is approved, you will be able to take up to 12 weeks unpaid without problems. I used mine intermitantly and my company could not fight it. It was especially good to have for my last few weeks as I had to miss several days of work each week for doctors appointments, tests, and hosptial stays.

You also need to discuss this with your doctor. Make sure your doctor supports it so you will have him on your side to fill out the paper work. Do what you need to for the best of your health.
Amy
Lupus Moderater


dialysis from lupus nephritis

oreo11
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2011
Total Posts : 399
   Posted 1/18/2012 8:31 PM (GMT -6)   
My heart goes out to you.  I am also a teacher and can really relate to your experiences with your health in your work situation.  Up until 4 years ago I was working a full 40+ week for my district and finding myself exhausted and often in full flare by Friday.  The week-end was not enough time to recover and I found all of my symptoms getting worse and worse.  I finally went to my principal and later, the superintendent, who supported my cutting back to four days a week.  It helped immensely.  I found that the state of my health was much more important than the money.  I pay a bit more for health insurance, but it's been worth it to me.  For the most part, I am able to work, taking the occassional sick days when I need them.  Hopefully, I can keep doing this for 6 more years....the magic day of retirement.

Lynnwood
Forum Moderator


Date Joined May 2005
Total Posts : 7720
   Posted 1/18/2012 9:35 PM (GMT -6)   
I too worked for a while until it became better to apply for disability. The important thing is to take care of yourself.

I don't think I could say it much better than Amy has above!
Lynnwood, Lupus & Sjogren's Moderator
DIAGNOSING-LUPUS & LUPUS-RESOURCES
"Life is far too important to be taken seriously" - Oscar Wilde

couchtater
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 14475
   Posted 1/19/2012 7:22 PM (GMT -6)   
Thank you for your support. How do you fill out a FMLA? I've only heard them mentioned in passing and I don't know where to start. Who do you see first?
Joy

AngelinaATF
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2012
Total Posts : 135
   Posted 1/20/2012 12:49 AM (GMT -6)   
If you CAN work - wow that's great! I would give anythg to be able to! But my disease isn't well controlled - its day to day.
If your stress will increase & help decrease, I can tell u what that's going to.add up to!
Major flare (s)= no fun.
Disability is superhard to get but if thru your job - no for it! Just don't count on SS!
I spent yrs trying.to get & gave up! They say if you can work 3 hrs a day sitting at a desk then not eligible! (I'm an Rph - I would never sit!) My job really screwed me over - independent pharmacy & I worked my tail off! I fought the illness hard for yrs & didn't have diagnosis - got so bad I couldn't walk & she (owner) wouldn't let me get disability! She was a very very mean horrible woman & at the time ass happy to get away fro her! Yours is very diff! Do what u feel in your heart - so cliche but true!
Angelina
age 41
dx: MCTD(LUPUS), RAYNAUDS, FIBROMYALGIA, L4L5 disc herniation, fracture in L3 fro EPIDURAL in childbirth
meds: Arava, prednisone, NIFEDIPINE, estropipate, cyclobenzaprine, gabapentin, hydrocod (4BTP), fentanyl patch, methotrexate - MTX (on hold), minocycline, clonaxepam (sleep), vitamin D, B stress complex, PRILOSEC, Transderm-Scop (on hold)

Lynnwood
Forum Moderator


Date Joined May 2005
Total Posts : 7720
   Posted 1/20/2012 8:19 AM (GMT -6)   
SSD takes some determination and time, but if you are sick and cannot work and have your doctors support it will work out in the end.

The first application is almost always denied, then you get a disability attorney (they work on commission for gov't mandated %) to help you get a hearing in front of them - the attny goes with you and the hearings usually work out.

Mine took over 3 years as my state, GA, is so far behind in processing but most states work much more rapidly.
Lynnwood, Lupus & Sjogren's Moderator
DIAGNOSING-LUPUS & LUPUS-RESOURCES
"Life is far too important to be taken seriously" - Oscar Wilde

aimsgirl16
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 1470
   Posted 1/20/2012 9:29 AM (GMT -6)   
FMLA- you have to visit your Human Resourses person. Probably the person that handles your other health care stuff such as insurance. Tell them you would like the FMLA form and then you will need to have your doctor fill it out for you.

Do you have any organ involvement? SS is almost impossible to get unless you can prove (and your doctors support) that you have some type of severe organ involvement. Could be brain, heart, or kidneys...and if that is the case, it makes things a tad easier. But if not, then yes, as Lynn said, you will probably be denied at least the first time. My amount of time took about a month here in NC. But then SS will not pay until you have been outta work 6 months.
Amy
Lupus Moderater


dialysis from lupus nephritis

mscrowbar
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2010
Total Posts : 877
   Posted 1/20/2012 2:30 PM (GMT -6)   
I think it is all a game of chance. I don't think anyone, anywhere, with any condition can be guaranteed of a timely approval. I have seen people get it fairly quick with little effort and I have seen people wait and wait. Unfortunetly, most cannot afford that waiting process. This is why I havent tried although many tell me with my age (51) and my conditions (fibro, RA, sjogrens, and absorption issues), I should be approved fairly quickly.

But, because of what happened to my sister, I am not a believer. Nor can I afford my meds and bills while I wait 1,2,3 years for that approval. I know someday I may not have a choice but, for now, I think its easier to work.
Denita

forum moderator/RA

Rheumatoid arthritis, Fibromyalgia, meniscus tears in left knee, Cancer survivor

couchtater
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 14475
   Posted 1/20/2012 5:15 PM (GMT -6)   
I feel like if things don't get too stressful and I don't get worse (crossed fingers) I can work until retirement (17yrs).
I have long-term disability insurance plus 60 sick days built up incase of an emergency. I'm hoping to build up enough sick days to buy out my retirement early.
Joy

Dodd
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2011
Total Posts : 34
   Posted 1/21/2012 5:22 AM (GMT -6)   
It is possible to get SSDI the first time. My wife got it. She is only 35 without any major organ involvement. She has "only" been sick 10 months and was approved about 2 months ago. At the time she wasn't even diagnosed with lupus yet, they were calling it Inflammatory Arthritis. She is still pretty much bed ridden from this horrible disease and so far no meds are helping, even the 35 mg of Pred doesn't help much. I don't think her doctors really had much to do with it. SSDI looks at her chart but I don't think they talked to the dr's. It isn't a permanent thing, she gets reviewed in 5-7 years. I'm hoping she is at least functional by then. It's such a two edged sword, I want her back even if she isn't good enough to work but it would mean losing her SSDI.

couchtater
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 14475
   Posted 1/21/2012 4:49 PM (GMT -6)   
Lynwood, I'm in GA so it would probably take awhile for me and I'd have to be pretty bad off to get it.
I'm waiting now to be tested for "Shrinking Lung Syndrome" from my lung doctor. I'm supposed to have the test in April. If I get diagnosed with it that would fall under major organ involvement.
Joy

AngelinaATF
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2012
Total Posts : 135
   Posted 1/22/2012 4:00 PM (GMT -6)   
I tried twice for SS & was denied bc my Rheum believes if u can possibly work 2 - 3 hrs a day then that's better than SS - she says if a person gets SS there is no motivation to do anything! Ha! If I could work I would be working! If not for my husband's income, I'd be in the gutter, ...homeless. He has kept us somehow from going bellyup (well, him & credit cards!) Now we have a stack of bills & I'm still unable to work!
I hope u have better luck than I did. The key is whether your Dr will support you. Had we not moved, ithink I would've been approved but I gave up & shouldn't have!
Angelina.
age 41, Mom of 2 great kids (10 & 7)
MCTD(LUPUS), RAYNAUDS, FIBROMYALGIA, L4L5 disc herniation, fracture in L3 fro EPIDURAL in childbirth
Meds: Arava, prednisone, Nifedipine, estropipate, cyclobenzaprine, Cymbalta, sulfasalazine, gabapentin, hydrocod, fentanyl patch, methotrexate - MTX (on hold), minocycline, clonaxepam (sleep), vit D, PRILOSEC, Transderm Scopalamine, Vit Bcomplex

suetoo
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 395
   Posted 1/23/2012 11:52 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi!
I am retired on SSD since Dec. 2010. I, too, had a teaching job I loved but could no longer do. Couldn't think straight, no longer could multitask, the exhaustion and neuro symptoms were incompatible with any ADL. Every minute of time I spent at home, I spent in bed. Being a nurse, if I made a mistake at work, my patients were at risk. My drs. were great, and it only took 2 months, 3 weeks and 2 days for my SSD to be approved. The paperwork was grueling, but I printed off a sloppy copy and did the 24 page questionaire one question at a time. I had a timeline and collection of abnormal labs that I submitted and think that really helped. The SSA physician I saw was wonderful, and I went on a "bad" day when I had no reflexes and the standard neuro tests weren't normal. The SSA online application process was truly user friendly. I am in NY, and when I decided I could no longer work safely or effectively, I first made an appt. at the nearest SSA office. They were amazingly kind and helpful. When I asked my drs. to help do the paperwork, my family dr. said he was surprised I worked as long as I did. I am only 56, and the blessing is my monthly check is what I used to bring home in my two paychecks. Please don't give up, and good luck.

God knows, even if I don't....
CNS Lupus 2005, APS, Hashimoto's Thyroiditis, Degenerative Osteoarthritis, Asthma
Meds: Plaquenil, Neurontin, Thyroid, meloxicam, Aspirin, Atenolol and Norvasc, Prednisone 5mg daily. (20-40mg prn), Vit. B12 2400 mcgs, Vit D 1000U, Calcium, Flector patch prn, Ambien and Elavil every night. Advair, Albuterol and DuoNeb inhalers.

couchtater
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 14475
   Posted 1/23/2012 4:36 PM (GMT -6)   
I had to attend a training class today on teaching math lessons. If you ask me what we discussed today I could not tell you anything. At the end of the lesson they wanted us to recall what we had learned and to tell the person next to us what we had learned. My mind went totally blanked! I fudged my way through something I had read the night before.
This is getting frustrating!
Joy

suetoo
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 395
   Posted 1/24/2012 8:16 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi! Joy,
I know just what you mean. That cognitive impairment That scary oh my God, I don't remember what I just did...that's what made me realize I needed to give up my job. I used The Spoon Theory with my lesson plan on disabilities, and from then on my students, (11th and 12th graders and adults), would offer me a plastic spoon when they saw I was having a tough day. Please start compiling a disability folder, and talk to your drs, too.
suetoo
God knows, even if I don't....
CNS Lupus 2005, APS, Hashimoto's Thyroiditis, Degenerative Osteoarthritis, Asthma
Meds: Plaquenil, Neurontin, Thyroid, meloxicam, Aspirin, Atenolol and Norvasc, Prednisone 5mg daily. (20-40mg prn), Vit. B12 2400 mcgs, Vit D 1000U, Calcium, Flector patch prn, Ambien and Elavil every night. Advair, Albuterol and DuoNeb inhalers.

Lynnwood
Forum Moderator


Date Joined May 2005
Total Posts : 7720
   Posted 1/24/2012 11:23 AM (GMT -6)   
If you do have measurable cognitive impairment, see a Neuropsychologist to get the impairment measured. In my case, it showed a significant loss of function, including motor skill, that that played a MAJOR role in getting my disability approved.

In fact, this was something my disability attorney suggested, not my doctor!
Lynnwood, Lupus & Sjogren's Moderator
DIAGNOSING-LUPUS & LUPUS-RESOURCES
"Life is far too important to be taken seriously" - Oscar Wilde

couchtater
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 14475
   Posted 1/24/2012 6:04 PM (GMT -6)   
I'll have to find one in my area. Probably have to look in one of the larger cities nearby. They'll have to be insurance approved too. Grrr!
Joy

momto3
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 1331
   Posted 1/28/2012 9:53 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Couchtater,
 
I have RA and some belly issues and I currently work an overnight shift 4 nights per week and by the time the 4th night rolls around, I feel so horrid, as if I have been hit by a truck and it literally takes me the next three days that I have off to recover. My rheumy has no idea I am even working this shift the way I am, and I am afraid to tell him. The place that I work at has those awful flurecent lights, so working an evening/night shift is out of the question. I tried that shift and had co-workers asking me what was wrong with my face, when I arrived home, I had a terrible red rash, and I didn't feel very well.  I guess the question is when do you throw in the towel? It is a difficult question sometimes..for me, I absolutely need the money from my job, and would not know what to do with myself if I had to sit at home everyday with nothing to do.  I'm 40 and my youngest daughter is in her first year of highschool. You asked if many of us are able to do it? I am able to work for the simple fact that my husband and family are a huge support as far as housework and meal prep and understanding that I have RA. My husband is not happy that I am working four overnights shifts because of the lack of sleep/flares. If I didn't have the support at home, then no I wouldn't be able to work the way that I do. On Friday nights there is no expectation that I will be preparing a gourmet meal! My family fends for themselves!

couchtater
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 14475
   Posted 1/29/2012 9:19 AM (GMT -6)   
I share a house and bills with my elderly parents right now. I'm not married or have any children. It's just me and my 3 cats.
My longterm disability program will more than enough pay bills, plus my pension has matured (13 yrs paid in), along with SSD I will be able to survive finacially.
In my area where I live there's not many jobs available: factory worker, store personal, baby sitter, or education. They are all stress filled or under florescent lights or both.

I just pray I can continue working as a teacher.
Joy

flower woman
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2009
Total Posts : 40
   Posted 2/3/2012 5:04 AM (GMT -6)   
Having worked as a florist for many years a job i loved and had my own shop for many years i began to struggle to the point of giving it up for a less physical job which was 9 -5 in a hospital lab! I thought i might manage the lighter work,not having yet been diagnosed at the time with anything other than psratic arthritis which seemed bad enough as it was i actually had sle it was descovered but not for four yrs after suffering in the flourecent lights with a multitude of symptoms i coul'nt control and after a long fight to get it under contrrol my employment was terminated!

I was so depressed,so ill,and so lonely for the following two years before i got some real help to control things but i've never been able to go to work again as yet and suffer a range of cognetive and arthritic symptoms which fluctuate and make daily life unpredictable however some days and weeks you would be unaware there was anything wrong with me if you did'nt know me!

I do what i can when i can and make the most of the good days now but i felt ashamed when i could no longer work and avoided people because i found it hard to acept. I tried to do a course at college three days a week for a 3 hour session and narrowed it down to 1 session a week very quickly which i only managed as i asked to sit with the light out above the whole area where i was seated near a very large windowed area with lots of natural light! I still had problems and i think they got sick of accomadating me,i still fount it difficult to work in the lighting and usually worked at home and attended the class for instruction....i was unable to do another term as i was told the class was full....people say they will accomadate people with dissability but in my experience if they cant see your dissability they just dont get it and it wares you out trying!
SLE sufferer with APS on plaqanil,mepacrine,pred dose dependant on flares,asprin,omeprazole,calcichew D2,fluoxetine and various pain meds.

flower woman
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2009
Total Posts : 40
   Posted 2/3/2012 5:07 AM (GMT -6)   
Think what i was trying to say is that when you can no longer work it's kind of decided for you and you have no choice!

I live on dissability now but i wish i did'nt have to!
SLE sufferer with APS on plaqanil,mepacrine,pred dose dependant on flares,asprin,omeprazole,calcichew D2,fluoxetine and various pain meds.

momto3
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 1331
   Posted 2/4/2012 10:19 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Joy..teaching is a tough job and requires so much energy! There was a time when I taught preschool and it came to a hault when I developed the RA. In fact, that is where my nightmare started.  I cannot imagine trying to keep up with children on a daily basis now, I simply can't. I understand your need to possibly re-think your options. I completely switched careers and that helped some, but I think for me it is the daily grind of children, well at least I just have one left to go and she is easy to manage.  It is the commuting that I do daily to get her to school and me to work of excess 100 miles per day.  We have job options here, but live way out from them and must travel in to reach them.  We chose our house pre-RA.  My job would be easy peasy if I could come home and sleep, but by the time I reach home, it is only a few hours until I have to hop back into the car and drive back to pick my daughter up from school.
 
If your disability pension etc would cover your costs, maybe go that route and then consider volunteering to keep busy? That is what I would fear most, boredom of being at home all day with nothing to do. However, volunteering is a wonderful way to stay in the loop.

couchtater
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 14475
   Posted 2/4/2012 1:09 PM (GMT -6)   
I do get stir crazy if I have to stay at home too long. I can go two to three days before I'm climbing the wall if I'm not flaring.
Joy

Nana Monster
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 966
   Posted 2/4/2012 1:16 PM (GMT -6)   
I can sincerely sympathize with you ladies, I work a 40 hour week in a dishroom of a 200 bed nursing home.
It's a lot of lifting, twisting and turning. I thought about going for SSD as it's getting hard to do the job anymore.
I've been there 13 years and they've finally got the insurance so it's almost affordable. $40 co-pay and most
diagnostics are covered so I don't know what to do. My maladies consist of RA, fibro, lupus, sciatica, scoliosis,
two trashed out knees, the hips are going, degenerative arthritis and bone spurs on my spine, nodes growing
on my fingers and my heart is upside-down. The only meds I do are hydrocordone, skelaxin and once in a while
a sleeping pill. Mostly I do herbals.
I have an appointment with a spine place that does acupuncture and herbals. The rhuemie wanted me on either
methroxerate or pacquenil...No Thanks!!!
New Topic Post Reply Printable Version
37 posts in this thread.
Viewing Page :
 1  2 
Forum Information
Currently it is Wednesday, June 20, 2018 9:40 AM (GMT -6)
There are a total of 2,973,596 posts in 326,113 threads.
View Active Threads


Who's Online
This forum has 161103 registered members. Please welcome our newest member, jrobinson1289.
443 Guest(s), 8 Registered Member(s) are currently online.  Details
GoBucks, YoungSuffererCanada, 1000Daisies, NutMeg1987, WalkingbyFaith, Alxander, ExhaustedGirl1, ChickenArise